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Hamas 'Hopes' For an IDF Ground Assault

Hamas spokesperson releases video statement, says terror group has only used a small portion of its arsenal.
By Dalit Halevy, Ari Yashar
First Publish: 7/11/2014, 8:07 AM

Hamas terrorist in Gaza (file)
Hamas terrorist in Gaza (file)
Reuters

A spokesperson for Hamas's military wing, the Al-Qassam Brigades, released a video statement on Thursday, in which he said Hamas is "hoping" that IDF forces will launch a ground offensive on Gaza.

The statement, made by Abu Obeida, came the same day that the IDF sent telephone warnings to 100,000 residents of Gaza, telling them to evacuate the area near the security border, in an indication of an imminent ground entry.

Abu Obeida said in the statement, which was broadcast on Hamas's TV channel, that the "enemy" started the war, despite Operation Protective Edge being launched in response to intense and incessant rocket fire from Gaza.

The Hamas spokesperson did not give an endpoint or conditions for a ceasefire, saying "Hamas is ready for a long battle that will last very long weeks."

Noting on Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon's comments indicating a forthcoming ground operation, Abu Obeida said Hamas "hopes for it." In fact, the IDF reports the ground operation is almost inevitable due to Hamas's usage of human shields.

Abu Obeida said Hamas has been escalating the rocket attacks on Israel, from Haifa to Dimona, where Israel's nuclear reactor is stored, a reactor the Hamas spokesperson called "the symbol of Israeli boastfulness."

Hamas has only used a small portion of the means at its disposal to attack Israel until now claimed Abu Obeida, adding that he was certain the "revolutionary wave" in Gaza, Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria and "within Israel" will continue to rise.

Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah faction similarly called for a violent "revolution" in Jerusalem last week, after an Arab youth was found murdered in Jerusalem, after which massive violent Arab riots sparked throughout Israel.

While the murder has been claimed to be a "revenge" attack for the murder of three Israeli teens by Hamas terrorists last month, a father of one of the suspects who was released said the main suspect has psychological problems, saying "if he did do something like this, it's because of his sickness."

The Hamas video, in Arabic, can be seen here: