Gaza factions, Hamas agree on calm in Gaza

Gaza factions, Hamas agree on calm in Gaza

The Islamic Hamas movement which rules the Gaza Strip and eaders of several factions and militant groups agreed late Wednesday to calm the situation in Gaza and avoid another Israeli war on the salient, officials said, dpa reported.

Ayman Taha, Hamas spokesman in Gaza, read a statement to the press, saying that the factions' leaders had agreed that "security and safety of the Palestinian people are so essential."

Leaders of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas Fatah party, from the West Bank, did not attend the meeting.

The meeting participants called on rival Hamas and Fatah movements to overcome their disputes and go for a comprehensive dialogue "to end their rift and agree on reconciliation."

Taha added that the leaders affirmed that "our people have been victimized by the Israeli occupation for more than a century and it is their legitimate right to resist the occupation by all means within a national accordance."

Meanwhile, Khalil al-Haya, a senior Islamic leader told reporters that the factions "will do their best to spare the Palestinian people any attempt of the enemy to use excuses here or there to carry out an aggression on their people."

"All the factions that attended the meeting value the necessity of sparing the Palestinian people any excuse to be given to the occupation to wage a new war on the Gaza Strip," said al-Hayyah.

He added that the factions' leaders "expressed readiness to be committed to calm as long as the occupation is committed to it."

Over the past three weeks, the coastal enclave had been witnessing an escalated wave of violence. Gaza militants fired dozens of homemade rockets, while Israeli war jets struck several targets of militants.

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