Hamas said yesterday that Israel is causing new crises in the Gaza Strip through its military escalation and targeting of Palestinian resistance sites and civilian facilities.
In a press release – a copy of which sent to MEMO – Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum said "the latest Israeli escalation in Gaza is a new crime added to the criminal record of the Israeli occupation".
Barhoum blamed Israel for the potential repercussions of this escalation, stressing that Hamas "knows very well how to deal with this criminal occupation, as well as how to prevent Israel from using Palestinian blood to fuel electoral campaigns." Barhoum was likely referring to accusations that Israeli establishment figures are using the escalation in the besieged Gaza Strip to further their electoral prospects ahead of the upcoming general election on 9 April.
Barhoum's statement came in the wake of a wave of Israeli airstrikes across the Gaza Strip, after Israel claimed two rockets from the besieged enclave were launched towards Tel Aviv.
Meanwhile, a spokesman for the Israeli army announced that 100 strikes had been carried out across Gaza. Palestinian sources reported that several farms and open areas were targeted in addition to the resistance sites, causing horror among women and children and leaving a husband and wife wounded.
Israel blamed Hamas for firing the rockets, but Hamas and the Palestinian factions denied responsibility. The Egyptian intelligence delegation which was in Gaza at the time passed a message from Hamas that the two rockets were launched by mistake during maintenance works.