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Jan 8, 2014

Hamas frees Fatah men, urges rival to reciprocate

GAZA (Reuters) – The Hamas government in the Gaza Strip freed seven imprisoned members of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah faction on Wednesday, saying it was trying to promote reconciliation with its West Bank-based rival.

Hamas, which seized Gaza from Western-backed Fatah in 2007, made the unity gesture at a time when the Islamist movement is grappling with a rift with neighboring Egypt’s military-backed government that has damaged and isolated the enclave’s economy.

Jan 6, 2014

Hamas says rival Fatah men exiled from Gaza can return

GAZA (Reuters) – The Hamas premier of Gaza said on Monday hundreds of members of the rival Palestinian Fatah group, exiled from the coastal enclave since a 2007 civil war, could now return in what he called a step towards Palestinian unity.

It appeared to be a notable gesture towards reconciling the ruling Islamist militant group in Gaza and the Western-backed Fatah in the West Bank, with Gaza now suffering economic and political isolation imposed by neighbors Egypt and Israel.

Jan 2, 2014

Daughter sees foul play in death of Palestinian envoy

PRAGUE/GAZA (Reuters) – The Palestinian envoy to Prague was ‘deliberately killed’, his daughter alleged on Thursday, a day after he died in a mysterious explosion after opening a safe in his residence.

Czech police said the blast that killed ambassador Jamal al-Jamal might have been caused by mishandling an explosive securing the safe. They said they were not treating it as an attack or a terrorist incident.

Dec 31, 2013

Hamas rejects terror label of Egypt Islamists

GAZA (Reuters) – The Palestinian group Hamas condemned on Tuesday Egypt’s designation of the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist group last week, reaffirming its solidarity with the ousted movement despite a crippling blockade imposed by Cairo.

Ismail Haniyeh, prime minister of the Hamas Gaza government, also snubbed calls by some rival Palestinian factions to sever its connections with the Brotherhood.

Dec 24, 2013

Israeli civilian, Palestinian girl killed in Gaza flare-up

GAZA (Reuters) – A Gaza sniper shot dead an Israeli civilian over the border on Tuesday and Israel hit back with air strikes on two Hamas training camps which hospital officials said killed a Palestinian girl near one of the targets.

The Israeli man, who the military said was working on Israel’s security fence, was the first Israeli killed on the Gaza frontier in more than a year.

Dec 18, 2013

Nearly 1 million Gazans to need food aid in 2014 – U.N.

GAZA, Dec 18 (Reuters) – Almost a million people are
expected to need food aid in the Gaza Strip next year, a U.N.
agency said on Wednesday as it appealed for $95 million from

About 813,000 Palestinian refugees currently receive food
aid from the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), but
the organisation expects a 10-20 percent rise in demand in 2014,
said Robert Turner, its Gaza director of operations.

Dec 15, 2013

Qatari-funded fuel enters Gaza to ease power crisis

GAZA, Dec 15 (Reuters) – Israel allowed the entry of 450,000
litres of fuel, paid for by Qatar, into the Gaza Strip on Sunday
to enable the Palestinian territory’s sole power plant to resume

Gaza’s 1.8 million people have been enduring daily blackouts
of around 12 hours since the power plant was switched off 43
days ago due to a fuel shortage caused by neighbouring Egypt’s
closure of smuggling tunnels.

Dec 14, 2013

More than 4,000 evacuated from Gaza ‘disaster area’ floods

GAZA (Reuters) – More than 4,000 people have been evacuated from flood-damaged homes in northern Gaza in what the United Nations has called “a disaster area”, officials said on Saturday.

Flooding has been so severe that access to many homes is by rowing boat and water is reported to be two meters (more than six feet) high in some places. Many people have been trapped inside inundated homes by rising waters.

Dec 12, 2013

Icy storm batters struggling Gaza Strip

GAZA, Dec 12 (Reuters) – A severe winter deluge enveloping
much of the Eastern Mediterranean added to the woes of
Palestinians in the Gaza Strip on Thursday, with more than 30
people injured in car crashes and as poorly built homes
collapsed in the icy rain.

Gaza’s 1.8 million people, governed by the Islamist group
Hamas, have already been enduring around 12 hours blackouts
daily since the lone power plant was switched off last month due
to a fuel shortage.

Dec 9, 2013

Egypt tunnel blockade takes toll on Gaza business

GAZA, Dec 9 (Reuters) – Mohammed Al-Telbani, owner of one of
Gaza’s biggest food factories, is the sort of businessman plucky
enough to thrive despite an Israeli blockade of the Palestinian
coastal enclave, but even he says he is finally running out of

With a new military-backed government in Egypt shutting
smuggling tunnels that had kept Gaza alive, he now worries for
the first time that the siege will choke off his business and
consign his 400 employees to poverty.

    • About Nidal

      "I have been Reuters senior correspondent in Gaza since 1996 working alongside a team of photographers and video journalists covering one of the world's perennial 'hot spots'."
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