Hamas spokesperson in Gaza Sami Abu Zuhri warned Thursday that the militant party would seek to kidnap more Israelis if the international community continued to turn a blind eye to the maltreatment of Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli prisons, Israel Radio reported.
Zuhri said that the world was only interested in the conditions in which the captured Israel Defense Forces soldier Gilad Shalit was being held, and ignored the suffering of the Palestinians serving prison sentences in Israel, adding that if the situation did not change they would have to find "new friends" for Shalit.
Earlier, Gaza militants opened fire at an Israel Defense Forces unit patrolling near the border with Israel, Army Radio reported.
The IDF patrol was reportedly hit by at least three mortar bombs, as well as two RPG anti-tank projectiles during a routine operation near Kibbutz Kissufim in the western Negev. No injuries were reported.
The incident comes 24 hours after Palestinian sources said six mortar shells that were fired at Israel from the Strip landed in Palestinian territory and injured six Gazans.
The mortar shells were aimed toward the Eshkol region of the western Negev, but landed in on Palestinian land, one of them hitting a house in the northern Gaza Strip town of Beit Hanoun, sending shrapnel flying and lighting a small fire inside.
Six Palestinians were injured, one of them seriously, Gaza emergency services chief Mo'aweya Hassanein said.
The shells were fired just two days after the Islamic Jihad in Gaza announced that it would cease firing rockets into Israel.
Earlier in the week on Sunday night, Gaza militants fired a Qassam into Israel, which hit an open area in the northwestern Negev area. There were no casualties and no damage was done. The attack came after Hamas said they would try to reduce rocket attacks against Israel.
Hamas spokesman Ayman Taha on Friday told the BBC that Hamas is working to curb rocket attacks against Israel by Gaza militants.
"The government in Gaza is in charge of the situation, and it does know clearly who launches rockets," Taha told the BBC. "It is working hard to deter any faction from acting individually.
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