In a rare briefing to journalists, Gaza-based Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar said yesterday his organization will “pummel” Israel if another war erupts.
Sinwar told journalists that Hamas “is not seeking a confrontation” with Israel, but “if such a confrontation should arise, Hamas will pummel Israel.”
Despite claiming that Israel is not starting a war with Gaza because of the “fear of the unknown,” he warned Israel against “taking stupid steps against the Gaza Strip” and claimed that “the Palestinian resistance has the ability to respond” to any provocations. Sinwar stressed that Hamas would be willing to dissolve its Administrative Committee, a shadow government that was formed in March and led to a series of punitive steps by Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas, “if we were convinced that we would not return to the vicious cycle [Abbas] put us in.”
Sinwar said the Egyptian government committed itself to opening the Rafah crossing for goods and passengers after the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha.
Sinwar also talked about improving the electricity situation in Gaza, which under Palestinian Authority (PA) sanctions receives only three to four hours of power a day. In June a deal was reached between former senior Fatah member Mohammed Dahlan, Hamas and Egypt, which included an agreement that Hamas will remain responsible for the internal and external security of the Gaza Strip, while a committee – headed by Dahlan – will be set up to run Gaza affairs with a £39 million ($50.2 million) budget.
In related news, a Hamas security official was killed last night in a suicide attack apparently carried out by a Salafi operative in Rafah on the Gaza-Egypt border. The Hamas Interior Ministry in Gaza announced that a Hamas security force stationed on the border arrested two suspects who approached the border with Egypt and one of them blew himself up. Palestinian newspaper Al-Quds reported that the bomber was a member of Islamic State.
[Photo: BICOM ]