There are some 1,600 amputees in Gaza. Here’s the story of one
Hamas is a militant and political Islamist group operating in the West Bank and Gaza. Hamas is designated as a terrorist organization by much of the international community, but enjoys wide support from Palestinians as a legitimate force against Israel’s occupation.
The movement was founded as an offshoot of Egypt’s Islamic Brotherhood, and in 1987 Hamas spiritual leader and founder Sheikh Ahmed Yassin established the movement’s military wing, which became known as Hamas. In 1988, in the wake of the outbreak of the First Intifada, Hamas published its official charter, in which it announced its departure from nonviolence in its struggle against Israel.
Hamas’ popularity among Palestinians comes partly from its tradition of providing welfare programs, such as schools and hospitals. The militant wing of Hamas adheres to the movement’s 1988 charter which calls for the liberation of all of historic Palestine, and views all lands under Israel’s domain as part of an Islamic Waqf, of which every inch must be liberated.
The signature of the 1993 Oslo Accords between Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) was viewed by the Hamas leadership inside the territories and in exile as a violation of Palestinian rights, and in 1993 Hamas launched its first suicide attack inside Israel, a practice that it would uphold from then on, causing massive Israeli civilian casualties.
Hamas leaders have long been the target of Israeli assassinations. Yassin was killed in 2004 in a missile strike as he left a mosque in Gaza. His Hamas co-founder, Abdel Rantisi, was killed weeks later in an Israeli air strike. In 1997, Hamas political leader Khaled Meshal was the target of a botched assassination attempt by agents from Israel’s Mossad espionage agency operating covertly in Jordan. Meshal’s life was saved when Israel agreed to hand over the antidote to the toxin used on him, in return for the release of the two Mossad agents caught and held in Jordan during the assassination attempt. Yassin, who was in an Israeli jail at the time, was released under the terms of the agreement.
Long-standing tensions between Hamas and the secular Fatah came to a head following the 2006 Palestinian legislative elections, which gave Hamas a decisive victory and put it in charge of the political regime in the Palestinian territories. Hamas’ Gaza chief, Ismail Haniyeh, was named Palestinian prime minister, but Hamas’ status as a terror group resulted in immediate sanctions from Israel and other Western countries. The group rejected demands to adhere to previously signed peace agreements, renounce violence and accept Israel’s right to exist, and the sanctions were upheld.
Meanwhile, tensions with Fatah grew as the two factions attempted to cooperate with the framework of a unity government, but when the attempt failed and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas dissolved the government, bloody clashes erupted between Hamas and Fatah in Gaza, resulting in the seizure of the area by Hamas in June 2007.
There have been numerous attempts by neighboring Arab countries to end the Hamas-Fatah rift, and form a unified Palestinian leadership. The failure of the two groups to come together has perpetuated the continuing division within the Palestinian Authority, with Fatah as de facto rulers in the West Bank, and Hamas firmly in control in Gaza.
Most of those departing were young, educated and relatively well-off, and mainly reach Europe via Turkey and then Greece
The Israeli government acted to end the hostilities because it feared the cancellation of the song contest would hurt the country's standing internationally
Iran has used militant groups throughout Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, and Gaza to strike its regional foes, which it might also do amid recent mounting tensions with the U.S.
Palestinians also marched across the West Bank to commemorate the 'catastrophe,' the Palestinian term for the displacement in 1948
Israeli security forces brace for clashes, worry Palestinian factions will allow protest to escalate due to European presence in Israel for Eurovision
Thousands of Palestinians expected to participate in demonstrations along Israeli border, as Hamas officials await remainder of Qatari aid money
Intelligence sources warned Israel's leaders of escalating tensions in the West Bank and the undermining of the PA’s status as a result of the economic crisis, the pending U.S. peace plan and Hamas’ recent 'point-scoring' against Israel
To prevent another escalation after last week's violence, all IDF responses to fire from Gaza must be cleared with senior officers
The transfer is part of the implementation of understandings reached following the latest round of escalations
Qatari, UN envoys to visit Strip for discussions on implementation of cease-fire agreement, Palestinian media report
The three are suspected of brutally and unjustifiably assaulting bound Palestinians with clubs after two other Israeli guards were stabbed by a jailed Hamas activist
Hamas has warned that if Israel does not implement all of the cease-fire agreements by the weekend, fighting may begin anew
Israel's commitment to cease-fire understandings will determine intensity of upcoming border protests, March of Return organizer says
If things don’t start to move by the weekend, we could be back to another escalation, a Hamas source says
The music isn’t even good, but both Israel and Hamas seem convinced that the success of the song contest is a decisive image maker
Paradoxically, the last round of fighting increases the chances of a large-scale operation in Gaza; U.S.-Iran tensions may have repercussions and Lieberman's silence indicates he may return to the Defense Ministry
Gaza's suffering will not and cannot be alleviated by any long-range rocket or armed drone. Why not try something different and recognize Israel?
By every indication, Israel will be giving Hamas exactly what it had committed to a month and a half ago, but the army is already discussing prospects of a broad military campaign in the coming months as rather reasonable
If understandings reached with Gazan factions aren't implemented, fighting will resume within days or weeks, defense officials say
Fighting will resume within the next few weeks if Israel doesn't take steps to lift the blockade on Gaza, Palestinian leaders warn
Israel's relief at a fragile ceasefire between Israel and Gaza's Hamas and Islamic Jihad militants days before the start of Eurovision may be badly misplaced
Two days of fighting claimed the lives of four Israelis and 25 Palestinians
Palestinian official says an Egyptian-mediated cease-fire agreement began Monday 4:30 A.M. ■ Nearly 700 rockets launched from Gaza and four Israelis killed in two days of hostilities ■ Israel strikes hundreds of targets in Strip, 23 Palestinians reported dead ■ Israel kills Hamas moneyman in first targeted hit since 2014
After two days of violence that saw nearly 700 rockets fired from the Strip and claimed lives of four Israelis and 25 Palestinians, Israeli army lifts restrictions for south
Netanyahu hasn’t done anything for a decade to change the awful strategic balance that has emerged between us and Gaza
Both Israel and Hamas are clenched in a system of mutual deterrence and dependence, which will only grow as long as there is no feasible diplomatic plan to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict