'Israel strikes against Gaza extension of its crimes in occupied Jerusalem and West Bank,' says Hamas

Ahram Online , Monday 18 Dec 2017

Israeli Occupation soldiers strikes Gaza
Israeli Occupation soldiers are seen at the Israeli side of the Israel Gaza border as Palestinians protest on Gaza side, December 15, 2017 (Photo: Reuters)

A spokesperson for the Hamas Islamist group, Hazem Qassem, said on Monday that the Israeli occupation forces' overnight strikes against Gaza are an extension of its crimes against the Palestinian people in occupied Jerusalem and the West Bank, Palestinian news agency Maan reported.

The intensive strikes against Gaza are a failed attempt  to pressure the people to stop their uprising against the US President Donald Trump's recent decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, Qassem added.

On Monday morning, the Israeli occupation forces said it attacked a Hamas training compound in the besieged Gaza strip in response to rocket strikes from the Palestinian enclave, Reuters reported.

In the last few days, several rockets were fired from Gaza into Israel, but with no injuries reported.

According to Reuters, there were no reported casualties in the overnight shelling exchange, which occurred days before US Vice President Mike Pence's planned visits to Israel and Egypt.

The Israeli crackdown on Palestinian protests against Trump's 6 December decision has left at least 11 Palestinians killed and more than 3,000 injured in the Gaza Strip, East Jerusalem and the West Bank.

Palestinain authorities have said that al least 500 Palestainains have been arrested by Israeli occupation forces since the start of the clashes, many in East Jerusalem. 

The Gaza Strip, home to almost two million Palestinians, has been under an Israeli siege since 2007.

The UN Security Council is expected to vote on Monday on a draft resolution critical of Trump's move.

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