Israeli air strikes hit Hamas targets in Gaza

Israel launches air strikes in Gaza, hitting Hamas training targets after Palestinians fire a missile at Israeli troops.

    Israeli air strikes hit Hamas targets in Gaza
    Palestinians have been divided since 2007 when Hamas took control of the Gaza Strip [AFP]

    Seven Israeli air strikes have bombarded the Gaza Strip, hitting training targets held by the Palestinian group Hamas and injuring four of its members.

    The Israeli military said the air strikes were launched in retaliation to Palestinians in the Gaza Strip firing a missile at Israeli troops patrolling the border on the last day of the Passover holiday.

    The military said the Palestinians fired several rockets into the country's south on Monday, damaging some infrastructure. No injuries on the Israeli side have been reported.

    Hamas confirmed the number of air strikes, while Gaza ambulance services were treating the injured Palestinians.

    According to the Israeli military, the latest bout of attacks started late on Sunday when an explosive device went off targeting Israeli troops along the border. It said 12 hours later, the Palestinians in Gaza fired a missile at soldiers on patrol in the same area.

    The latest exchange came as rival Palestinian groups Hamas and Fatah began talks aimed at reaching a reconciliation agreement, the Associated Press news agency reported.

    Reconciliation attempt

    A senior Hamas leader based in Egypt, Moussa Abu Marzuk, is meeting Hamas leaders in Gaza on Monday ahead of a visit by Fatah officials on Tuesday.

    Hamas freed 10 Fatah prisoners before the meeting as a goodwill gesture.

    Palestinians have been divided since 2007 when Hamas took control of the Gaza Strip from forces loyal to the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, of Fatah.

    Since then, Hamas has ruled Gaza while Abbas governs some areas in the West Bank.

    Past reconciliation attempts have failed.

    It was unusual for Cairo to allow the visit since Egypt is cracking down on the Muslim Brotherhood group, of which Hamas is an offshoot.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


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