14:42 GMT +306 December 2019
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    Palestinians run for cover as smoke rises following an Israeli air strike on a Hamas post, in the northern Gaza Strip on February 6, 2017

    Israel Closer Than Ever to Controlling Gaza – Minister

    © AFP 2019 / MOHAMMED ABED
    Middle East
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    A week after Israel and Hamas signed an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire, passions on both sides of the Gaza divide still run high.

    A senior Israeli Cabinet minister has threatened to kill the leader of the militant Hamas movement governing Gaza, the Associated Press reported from Jerusalem.

    "Yehiyeh Sinwar's time is limited […] he will not end his life in an old folks' home,” Yoav Gallant said when speaking at the Jerusalem Post Diplomatic Conference on Wednesday.

    Gallant then vowed that Israel would launch another military campaign in Gaza and advised Sinwar to "recalculate his route."

    A ceasefire was agreed in Gaza earlier this month, following two days of air strikes. Palestinian groups, including Hamas, said they had accepted an Egyptian mediated truce to end the violence.

    The deal marks an end to the heaviest round of fighting between Israel and Hamas since a 2014 war, which put the sides on the brink of their fourth war in a decade.

    Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman resigned over the Cabinet's decision to accept a ceasefire in Gaza denouncing the move as "surrendering to terror."

    He warned that his right-wing Yisrael Beiteinu party would leave the ruling coalition, which could lead to an early election.

    According to Israel’s military, during the months leading up to the November 13 ceasefire, Palestinian militants fired 460 rockets and mortar shells into Israel, while the Israeli military launched airstrikes on 160 targets in Gaza.

    READ MORE: Palestinian Militants Declare Ceasefire With Israel Amid Gaza Escalation

    Fourteen Palestinians, including 12 militants, were killed, while a Palestinian labourer working in Israel was killed by a rocket fired from Gaza.

    Tensions on the Israeli border with Gaza flared up during the Great March of Return rally, which began on 30 March on the 70th anniversary of the foundation of Israel and in protest against the moving of the US Embassy to Jerusalem, which Palestinians consider to be their capital.


    Palestinian Militants Declare Ceasefire With Israel Amid Gaza Escalation
    Israeli operation, Hamas leader, Israeli minister, threat, Hamas, Yehiyeh Sinwar, Yoav Gallant, Avigdor Lieberman, Israel
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