Palestinian sources told the Egyptian daily newspaper Al Ahram that the Hamas leadership in the Gaza Strip sought to extend the six-month cease-fire that preceded Israel's military offensive last month and are furious with Hamas' Damascus-based political bureau chief Khaled Meshal's decision to end the truce, Israel Radio reported on Saturday.
According to the report, two senior Hamas officials in Gaza - Mahmoud al-Zahar and Ahmed al-Jabari - warned Meshal that abandoning the cease-fire was "rash" given that the organization had not adequately prepared for an Israeli ground incursion into the Gaza Strip.
Speaking before a group of politicians in Kuwait on Friday, Meshal said the current round of confrontation is still ongoing due to the closure and siege imposed on Gaza. Any attempt to make peace in the region while circumventing the rights of the Palestinians will fail, Israel Radio quoted Meshal as saying.
A senior member of Hamas leadership, which went underground when Israel launched its military offensive in the Gaza Strip a month ago, on Friday made his first public appearance since the fighting ended.
Khalil Al-Hayya, one of three survivors of the five best known Hamas leaders, told supporters at a rally that the group had achieved victory in the war and was now engaged in a political battle.
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