Hamas’ leader in Gaza left for talks with Egyptian officials late on Thursday after a new outbreak of violence, as Hamas accused Israeli occupation of slowing down the implementation of Egyptian-mediated understandings aimed at easing the situation in the Palestinian enclave, according to VOA.
The visit by Yehiyeh Sinwar to Cairo on Friday came hours after the Israeli occupation military struck several Hamas sites in Gaza in response to incendiary balloons with explosives launched from the strip late on Wednesday.
After the airstrikes, Palestinian movements fired rockets at southern Israeli settlements but no injuries were reported on either side.
The brief flare-up marked the first Israeli strike in more than a month of relative calm that followed the unofficial deal. Egyptian mediators have been trying to reach a long-term cease-fire during the lull.
In a short statement, Hamas said on Friday that Sinwar will meet the director of Egypt’s general intelligence to discuss “ways of alleviating the suffering” of Gaza’s 2 million residents.
Hamas says Israeli occupation is not abiding by the deal. Under the agreement, Israel had expanded the permitted fishing zone off Gaza’s coast to 15 nautical miles, but scaled back the area to its previous limit of 9 miles this week after a Gaza rocket was fired.
Officials from Hamas, which has controlled Gaza by force since a 2007 coup, say Israel did not honor other commitments, such as allowing the transfer of Qatari money to Gaza’s cash-strapped public institutions and taking measures to further ease the territory’s grinding power shortages.