GAZA (Reuters) – Escalating tension between Islamist group Hamas and its Western-backed rival Fatah has pushed their “unity” government to the brink of collapse, harming efforts to rebuild the Gaza Strip and complicating Palestinian statehood ambitions.
Five months after a devastating war with Israel, Gaza’s residents are still occasionally jolted by explosions. But the blasts now are more often the result of the internal conflict tearing at the fabric of Palestinian politics.
GAZA (Reuters) – Palestinians at home and those in the stadium in Newcastle refused to let a 4-0 drubbing by Japan hinder the party as they celebrated their first ever match at the Asian Cup.
Hundreds of fans, including women and children, gathered at a large venue in Gaza City to watch their national team on a giant screen take on the title holders of Asia’s biggest soccer tournament play in a country that does not recognise them.
GAZA (Reuters) – The Hamas group that controls the Gaza Strip on Saturday issued a condemnation of the deadly attacks by Islamist gunmen in France this week, saying there was no “justification for killing innocents”.
The Palestinian Islamist faction, which is designated as a terror organization by most Western countries, also challenged Israel’s “helpless attempts” to draw comparisons between its activities and the violence in France.
ISRAEL-GAZA BORDER (Reuters) – Hamas authorities in the Gaza Strip prevented on Sunday a group of Palestinian children who lost parents in the July-August war with Israel from making a rare goodwill visit to the Jewish state, organizers of the trip said.
Gaza’s Hamas-controlled Interior Ministry, citing the children’s “suspicious” itinerary, confirmed they were barred from crossing the border.
GAZA/RAMALLAH, Dec 22 (Reuters) – With Israel’s approval,
Palestinians began importing machinery on Monday to equip the
Gaza Strip’s first Coca Cola plant for an anticipated
2015 launch of operations.
Emad al-Hindi, director-general of the Palestinian National
Beverage Company which produces the soft drink in the occupied
West Bank, said 10 truckloads of machinery had arrived in Gaza
via a crossing with Israel.
GAZA (Reuters) – Egypt opened the Rafah border crossing on Sunday for incoming passengers from the Gaza Strip for the first time in almost two months, Palestinian and Egyptian officials said.
Rafah is the only major crossing between impoverished Gaza, home to 1.8 million Palestinians, and the outside world that does not border Israel, which blockades the strip and allows passage mainly on humanitarian grounds.
GAZA (Reuters) – Two months after donors pledged $5.4 billion to help rebuild Gaza after the war between Israel and Hamas, Palestinian, U.N. and other officials say barely 2 percent of the money has been transferred.
The conference in Cairo had been hailed as a success, with Qatar promising $1 billion, Saudi Arabia $500 million and the United States and the European Union a combined $780 million in various forms of assistance.
GAZA (Reuters) – Hamas and Iran have repaired a close political and military relationship frayed by the Syrian civil war, the Palestinian Islamist group’s deputy leader said on Wednesday.
Patching up ties with Tehran could ease Hamas’s financial and political isolation. Israel is blockading the Gaza Strip, while Egypt, battling Islamist militants in neighboring Sinai, has largely kept its Gaza frontier closed.
GAZA (Reuters) – Vowing to destroy Israel, Hamas paraded some 2,000 of its armed fighters and truck-mounted rockets through Gaza on Sunday, marking its 27th anniversary with its biggest show of force since the end of the Gaza war this summer.
A ceasefire in August halted 50 days of fighting with Israel in which local health officials said more than 2,100 Palestinians, most of them civilians, were killed. Israel put the number of its dead at 67 soldiers and six civilians.
GAZA (Reuters) – The United Nations has begun investigating Israeli attacks that hit U.N. facilities during last summer’s Gaza war and how Palestinian militants came to store weapons at several U.N. schools, officials said on Wednesday.
A team of UN investigators arrived in Gaza on Tuesday to conduct the inquiry, three months after the war ended. They had already met with Israeli representatives in Jerusalem. The investigation is expected to last three weeks.