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    A Palestinian militant of Izzedine al-Qassam Brigades, military wing of Hamas

    Hamas Warns Israel it May Respond to Gaza Strip Attack

    © East News / Adel Hana
    Middle East
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    Hamas movement stated that Israel was "playing with fire" and warned that the movement had the right to "protect its people" in response to an attack by Israeli forces.

    GAZA STRIP, December 24 (Sputnik) – Radical Palestinian Islamic organization Hamas said Wednesday that Israel was "playing with fire" and warned that the movement had the right to "protect its people" in response to an attack by Israeli forces.

    "This is a serious escalation. Israeli occupation is playing with fire. It is responsible for the consequences. The opposition has the right to protect its people," Hamas said.

    Earlier in the day, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) said that IDF and the country's ground forces "responded immediately" to a Palestinian sniper attack on IDF in southern Gaza Strip.

    "Following the sniper attack on the #Gaza border, #IDF air & ground forces responded immediately to the threat," the IDF press service said Wednesday on its Twitter account.

    On August 26, the Palestinian Authority and Israel agreed to an open-ended ceasefire. The truce followed a June Israeli-Palestinian clash after Israel blamed Hamas, the de facto authority in Gaza, for the death of three Israeli schoolboys. Israel responded with the launch of the Protective Edge operation.

    According to the United Nations, more than 2,000 Palestinians, mostly civilians, and more than 60 Israelis died during the operation.

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    Hamas, Israel, Gaza Strip
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