Gaza Strip: Two Palestinians shot dead as Israeli settlements bombed
Israeli snipers shot dead a commander of the Palestinian movement Hamas in the Gaza Strip on Sunday, witnesses and Hamas officials said. Saeed Seyam was a Hamas commander in the southern Gaza city of Khan Younes. Witnesses said he was hit in the neck with a single shot.
Some two hours before the reported incident Israel warned Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas that should he not immediately stop armed groups from firing mortar shells and rockets in the Gaza Strip, the Israeli army would launch a large-scale ground operation to halt all shelling until the "disengagement" takes place.
On his part, Israel's Prime Minister Ariel Sharon told his cabinet on Sunday that he ordered security heads to act against "terrorists" unrelentlessly. "We do not plan to allow the situation to continue in any way," he said. "It's clear that it is impossible to reach a political agreement when terror rages on our borders."
Later in the day another Palestinian was shot dead in the Gaza Strip, near "Netzarim" settlement. At least one Palestinian civilian was wounded Sunday afternoon in the Strip as an Israeli aircraft launched a missile toward a Palestinian car. The strike took place in the Northern town of Beit Lahiya.
Also in the Strip, a mortar shell hit a house in the settlement of "Neveh Dekalim" Sunday, seriously wounding two Israelis. Palestinian gunners have fired more than 100 shells at settlements and the western Negev town of Sderot in recent days, Israeli reports said..
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