Hamas Vows Revenge for Nablus Massacre, PA Says Israel a Political Terrorist State
The spiritual leader of Palestinian fundamentalist movement Hamas, Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, warned Tuesday that Israel would pay the price for the killing of eight Palestinians in an Israeli strike against Hamas in the West Bank town of Nablus,said AFP.
"The Israeli people should know that they will pay the price, because our blood is not cheap," Yassin told reporters in Gaza after the attack, which killed five Hamas members, including two political leaders, and two children.
Asked about acts of revenge, he said: "This is for the military wing to decide. They should react since Israel has broken all red lines and taboos."
Meanwhile, the Palestinian leadership accused Israel of waging "political terrorism" following the massacre.
Five Hamas leaders and three other Palestinians, including two children, were killed and 15 others were injured when Israeli helicopters fired missiles at an office where leaders of the movement were holding a meeting on Tuesday, said reports.
According to Al Jazeera satellite channel’s correspondent, the group’s Media and Studies offices in a Nablus neighborhood were targeted by the Israelis missiles.
Nablus Governor Mahmoud Al Aloul told the station by phone that two brothers, aged eight and 10, and were killed in the attack while standing at the entrance of the office building.
Aloul called the assault a helicopter gunship attack, but witnesses told CNN that the raid was carried out by Israeli tanks.
Hamas leader in Nablus Jamal Mansour, aged 40, and another of the group's leaders, Jamal Salim, were among the victims.
A journalist, Mohammed Al Bishawi, who was covering the meeting, was also killed in the attack. Bishawi was a correspondent for the Palestinian daily Al Haya Al Jadeedah.
The other victims were identified by the Palestinian news agency (WAFA) as: Othman Qataman, Faheem Dawabsheh, and Omar Mansour.
The two children were Bilal and Ashraf Khaleel.
Israel took responsibility for the attack.
Israeli sources told Radio Israel that the Hamas members killed were planning attacks in the Jerusalem area. “The government expressed regret for the death of the two children,” they said.
Last Friday, Haaretz reported that since the Tel Aviv attack on June 1, in which 22 people were killed, Mansour had been escorted by armed body guards for fear of assassination.
According to Israeli security sources, the Hamas organization in Nablus has been responsible for about half of the suicide attacks carried out inside Israel, said the daily.
Reports said that Hamas vowed revenge for the murder of its leaders. On the Israeli side, the army said it was into checking the report, according to AFP.
Gaza Strip security chief Mohammed Dahlan warned that Hamas would seek revenge for the Israeli attack.
"The Israelis know that if they do this there will be revenge" attacks by Hamas, he told AFP.
The Fateh movement aligned with Palestinian Yasser Arafat called for marches and a general strike on Wednesday to condemn the crime, said Al Jazeera.
Meanwhile, the Palestinian news agency, Wafa, reported that another Palestinian, Mohammad Hosni, 20, was killed by Israeli fire at the Martyrs Junction (Netzarim) the same day. He was shot in the heart by soldiers stationed at the flashpoint intersection. AFP said that Hosni was a policeman.
Earlier Tuesday, a Palestinian fighter from the Islamic Jihad movement was killed in armed clashes with Israeli soldiers in the Gaza Strip, medical sources told AFP.
Hamuda Al Madhun, 23, was died in a shoot-out near the Mintar (Karni) crossing point on the northern border between the Gaza Strip and Israel, the sources said.
Meanwhile, an undercover unit kidnapped Hamas activist Walid Khaled in the West Bank early Tuesday morning, according to Haaretz.
The paper quoted Israeli security sources as saying that Khaled, a resident of the village of Salfit in the Nablus area, was on their "wanted" list and that he was detained near the Tapuah Junction. Palestinian sources said Khaled was taken from his home – Albawaba.com
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