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      Hamas Arrests Salafist Terrorists After Rocket Attack on Israel

      Gaza's Hamas rulers have arrested two Salafist terrorists, after a Salafist group claimed a rocket attack on the city of Sderot.
      By Elad Benari, Canada
      First Publish: 3/22/2013, 10:58 PM

      Gaza Salafists wave Al-Qaeda flag during protest
      Gaza Salafists wave Al-Qaeda flag during protest
      AFP/File

      Gaza's Hamas rulers have arrested two Salafist terrorists, sources said Friday, after a Salafist group claimed a rocket attack on Israel.

      According to the sources, cited by AFP, "the Hamas internal security forces arrested two of our Salafist brothers" in the center of Gaza.

      A coalition of Salafist groups in Gaza, which oppose the Hamas regime, claimed responsibility for the firing of two rockets at the city of Sderot on Thursday, while U.S. President Barack Obama was visiting the Jewish state.

      In a statement headlined "The demolition of Sderot by rocket bombardment in reaction to the visit of the dog Obama," the Mujahedeen Shura Council had said it was responsible for an attack launched from Gaza.

      One rocket fired at Israel caused heavy damage to a house in Sderot. There were no physical injuries.

      A second rocket reportedly landed in an open area, causing no physical injuries or damages.

      Israel responded to the rocket attacks by cutting the permitted fishing zone for Gaza fishermen in half, from six miles to three miles offshore. This brings the fishing zone back to its size before Operation Pillar of Defense.

      The curtailment of the fishing zone was approved by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon.

      In addition, Yaalon gave orders stopping the passage of all merchandise at the Kerem Shalom terminal between Gaza and Israel. The Erez Crossing will serve only for humanitarian purposes.  

      The relations of Hamas with hardline groups in Gaza  have sharply deteriorated since it violently cracked down on Salafist radicals in 2009.

      Although Hamas, like its parent group the Muslim Brotherhood, is more observant of Islam than the secular Fatah faction, Salafi groups hold the ruling faction in contempt and hope to instead wrest control of Gaza from Hamas and install a Sharia-bound regime instead.

      (Arutz Sheva’s North American Desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)