Sunday, 28 December 2008

Gaza attacks

Bismillah hir-Rahma nir-Raheem
(In the name of Allah, the most Kind and the most Merciful.)

"Oh Allah, we ask you for help and seek your forgiveness, and we believe in You and have trust in You, and we praise you in the best way and we thank You and we are not ungrateful to you, and we forsake and turn away from the one who disobeys you. "

"O Allah, we worship You only and pray to You and prostrate ourselves before You, and we run towards You and serve You, and we hope to receive your mercy, and we fear your punishment. Surely, the disbelievers will receive your punishement."

"Peace and mercy of Allah be upon the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)"


Gazan killed in Israeli air raid

A Palestinian man has been killed in an Israeli missile attack in the first death since the end of a six-month-old ceasefire between Israel and Hamas.

Ali Hijazi, 22, and two other men who were wounded were members of the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, witnesses said on Saturday.

The air raid targeted a group of fighters firing rockets towards Israel, an Israeli military official said.

The attack in Beit Lahiya in the northern Gaza Strip came a day after the end of the ceasefire.

Sherine Tadros, Al Jazeera's correspondent in Gaza, said: "The [Israeli] military told us that six projectiles have been launched from the Gaza Strip towards southern Israel.

"This is coming as very sad news for the people here who once again find themselves in the position they were in before the ceasefire, in terms of this almost daily aggression by Israel and very uncertain times in terms of what will happen next.

"From the Israeli side they have said that ... as long as there is peace from the Palestinian side they will respond with peace. But if there is aggression by Palestinian factions, they will fight back with force."

In Gaza, a ceasefire agreed in June officially ended at daybreak on Friday, after Hamas said it would not renew it.

Hamas blamed Israelis for the failure of the ceasefire, saying that they had not lived up to their obligations under the deal by continuing a blockade of the Gaza Strip.

Gaza toll climbs amid fresh raids

A mosque was among the buildings destroyed in the latest series of air raids [Reuters]

Palestinian medics say that more than 280 people have been killed and more than 600 injured in continuing Israeli bombardment of the impoverished Gaza Strip.

A police station and a factory were among the targets reportedly hit on Sunday, after a mosque and the headquarters of al-Aqsa television had been struck overnight.

The Reuters news agency reported that at least one missile hit the offices of Ismail Haniya, the Hamas leader in the Gaza Strip, but he was not in the building at the time.

The latest attacks came as Ehud Barak, Israel's defence minister, warned that the air raids could be followed by a major ground incursion into the Gaza Strip.

"We are ready for anything. If it's necessary to deploy ground forces to defend our citizens, we will do so," Barak's spokesman quoted him as saying on Sunday.

Israeli television has reported that hundreds of infantry and armoured forces were massing on the border of the territory and on Sunday it began to call up reservists to bolster its fighting strength

Tens of thousands gathered in Yemen to
protest against the Israeli attack [AFP]

Protesters across the Middle East have held a second day of demonstrations against Israel's military assault on the Gaza Strip.In Yemen, tens of thousands of people gathered to show their support for the Gazans, while in the occupied West Bank protesters clashed with Israeli soldiers on Sunday.

During the Yemeni protest, held in the capital Sanaa, the crowds filled a sports stadium and the surrounding area chanting anti-Israeli slogans and criticising Arab leaders for failing to act."How long will the silence last? Arabs wake up!" read one banner held by demonstrators.

The demonstration was backed by the ruling party, opposition groups and other organisations.

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