Israel thwarts Hamas Chanukah plot to kidnap soldier or settler


The Gaza Strip, home to 1.8 million, has been under an Israeli siege since June 2007. The Arabic reads, "For the sake of Jerusalem#Jerusalem [is] our capital" (Facebook page of QudsN, December 11, 2017).

Trump's decision last week has triggered Palestinian protests in the West Bank and Gaza, including some that escalated into deadly clashes with Israeli troops, but it remains unclear whether widespread Palestinian anger at the USA will lead to a full-fledged uprising. Therefore, Hamas has been encouraging the Palestinians in the West Bank to take to the streets and clash with Israeli security forces while trying to contain the protests in Gaza.

Israel said on Thursday that it has made a decision to shut down Erez (Beit Hanoun) crossing for people and Kerem Shalom (Karem Abu Salem) crossing for goods, which come as a collective punishment following days of rocket attacks from Gaza into southern Israel. It began in the Gazan city of Khan Younis and extended "hundreds of meters" inside Israeli territory. The United Nations partition plan, drawn up in 1947, envisioned the city neither as part of an Arab nor a Jewish state, but instead run separately under an worldwide regime.

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Hamas' long time opposition to Israel's occupation seems to have paid-off in the form of popular support among the Palestinians, especially in wake the of the United States president's decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

The source said that Hamas was facing a contradictory range of domestic pressures inside Gaza, to attack Israel and not to provoke a large-scale IDF incursion. "The military facilities were used as training and weapons storage compounds", the army said.

Two of the rockets fired by militants were intercepted by Israel's Iron Dome anti-missile system and a third exploded in an open area of southern Israel. For Trump, the embassy move also fulfilled an election campaign promise.

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At the end of the war that followed Israel's independence in 1948, Jordan was left in control of the eastern part of Jerusalem.

Hamas' rival, the Fatah movement of West Bank-based Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, seeks to establish a Palestinian state in lands Israel captured in 1967, with east Jerusalem as a capital.

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