Israeli artillery fire killed five Palestinians and injured some 40 after an anti-tank missile from the Gaza Strip hit a school bus in southern Israel, injuring two people, April 8. One of the dead is reported to be a small child. Hamas’s armed wing claimed responsibility for the missile attack, saying it was an “initial response” to Israel killing three of the group’s leaders last weekend, when an air-strike hit their car in southern Gaza. But the escalation comes one day after the Hamas administration in Gaza said it had got most armed Palestinian factions in Gaza to sign on to a ceasefire in a bid to prevent further Israeli strikes. (Ma’an News Agency, April 8)
Israel is also said to have carried out an air raid April 5 on Sudan‘s Red Sea coast, with Khartoum’s Foreign Minister Ali Ahmad Karti accusing Israel of the attack the following day. Palestinian security officials said that target in the alleged strike was the successor to assassinated Hamas official Mahmoud Mabhouh. Abdul-Latif Ashkar, one of two men killed in a strike on a car in Sudan, is said to have taken over the role of weapons gathering formerly carried out by Mabhouh, who was assassinated in a Dubai hotel room last year. Hamas Deputy Politburo Chief Moussa Abu Marzouq, however, told the Jerusalem-based daily al-Quds al-Arabi newspaper that the two “were not Palestinian and had no connection to Hamas.” (Ma’an News Agency, April 8)
Israel was also accused of an air-strike on Sudan two years ago.
See our last post on the Israel and Gaza.