Israel

Hamas Leader Haniyeh: Third Intifada Has Begun

The third intifada has begun in the West Bank, according to the man who led Hamas’ regime in Gaza until the power-sharing deal brought in a Fatah-Hamas Palestinian government in June.

Former Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh described the clashes as an “intifada,” or uprising.

“We’re not saying the intifada will start; we’re saying it has started already in the West Bank, and no one can stop it,” he told journalists in Gaza.

“The enemy [Israel] cannot put a stop to the escalation of the resistance.”

Hamas refuses to admit it was behind the abduction of three Israeli teens on June 12 but its leaders welcomed the capture.

Hamas political bureau chief Khaled Mashaal denied Monday that his organization had any information about the kidnapping of three Israeli teens in the West Bank on June 13 but he applauded the action to capture who he called the three “soldier settlers.”

“If indeed there was a capture, those who did it must be saluted,” he added.

For now though, Hamas’ claim that a third uprising has begun is a trial balloon, former head of the Israel Defense Forces’ Operations Branch Maj.-Gen. (ret.) Israel Ziv told news conference organized by The Israel Project on June 24.

“It’s kind of throwing stones at Israel and seeing what will happen….Over the last year there has been an increase in violence…I don’t the it’s really there (yet).”

[Photo: Andrew Ratto / Wiki Commons]