The Terror Journal

A Journal on Terrorism and Genocide

Key Hamas leader killed in Gaza

Said Siyam (Hamas)Israeli forces thrust deep into central Gaza on Thursday, killing a senior Hamas leader, in what may be a final push against the Islamist group before agreeing to a ceasefire in the 20-day-old war.

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Diplomatic sources said Israeli leaders were studying Hamas’s terms for a truce. They included a year-long, renewable ceasefire, the withdrawal of all Israel forces within 5 to 7 days, and the immediate opening of all Gaza border crossings, backed by international guarantees they would stay open.

U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, speaking after talks in Jerusalem with Israeli leaders, said: “I understand today the Israeli government will make an important decision on a ceasefire. I hope that decision will be the right one.”

In a step to bring a deal closer, the United States told Israel it would be prepared to offer security guarantees.

The Palestinian death toll from the air-and-ground offensive was at least 1,095 and over 5,000 are wounded, according to the Hamas-run Health Ministry in Gaza. A Palestinian rights group said at least 698 of the dead were civilians.

Thirteen Israelis have been killed, including 10 soldiers and three civilians hit by Hamas rocket fire.

In Damascus, the exiled leader of Hamas, Khaled Meshaal, reiterated his group’s demands for a truce with Israel in the Gaza Strip, saying any ceasefire deal had to meet them.

“First, the aggression must stop; second, the Israeli forces must withdraw from Gaza … immediately, of course; thirdly, the siege must be lifted and fourth we want all crossing-points (into Gaza) reopened, first of which is Rafah (Egypt).”

An Israeli air strike on a house in Jabalya refugee camp killed Hamas Interior Minister Saeed Seyyam, his son, brother and half a dozen others, medical workers said. Seyyam oversaw 13,000 Hamas police and security men.

At least 15 Palestinians were killed in Israeli attacks in Gaza city during the day, medical officials said. Israeli fire also hit a U.N. compound, a hospital and a TV office.

Source: Reuters

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