Turkey condemns armed attack against Palestinian PM's convoy

Angelica Greene
March 14, 2018

However, suspicion of Hamas involvement was running high.

Witnesses said the bomb was planted under an electric pole on Gaza's main north-south road and went off shortly after Hamdallah's 20-vehicle convoy had entered through the Israeli-controlled crossing.

President Donald Trump's Mideast envoy has condemned the attack on Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah's convoy in Gaza.

In a statement on Tuesday, Jason Greenblatt said Hamas and other terrorist groups have brought Gaza "to the brink of collapse". "Wishing a speedy recovery to the injured", Greenblatt said.

In his speech, Hamdalla added that the Palestinian government only asks Hamas movement not to give Israel the chance to capitalize on inter-Palestinian division and consider the Gaza Strip an isolated part of the Palestinian homeland.

No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack. It promised an "urgent" investigation.

'We will continue working until we return to Gaza and unify our ranks, ' he assured.

JABALIYA Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah survived an attack on his convoy while on a rare visit to Gaza on Tuesday.

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US State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said on Twitter that "Palestinians in Gaza need a real government that will provide basic services - not today's attack on PA officials trying to inaugurate a water treatment plant desperately needed in Gaza".

A statement from Hamas condemned the attack, saying it was done by the "same hands" responsible for the assassination of one senior Hamas figure, Mazen Faqha, and the attempted assassination of another past year.

The visit comes amid ongoing Egypt-backed talks between Hamas and rival Palestinian faction Fatah, from which Hamas seized control of Gaza in 2007.

The party dominates the Palestinian Authority that administers the parts of the occupied West Bank under Palestinian control.

The White House on Tuesday unveiled the attendance list for the summit, which includes rich donor countries as well as regional powers Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Bahrain - none of whom have diplomatic ties with Israel, whose representatives will also be in attendance.

PA Civil Affairs Minister Hussein al-Sheikh said Hamas would be held responsible. The two parties, which fought an bitter internecine war in Gaza in 2007, signed a reconciliation deal in Cairo past year. Hamas governs Gaza, and the PA governs the West Bank.

Hamas condemned President Mahmoud Abbas for blaming it for the blast, and Abbas' security chief, Majed Farraj, said it was "too early" to say who was responsible.

Other reports by GizPress

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