Islamic Jihad rally in Gaza
Islamic Jihad rally in Gaza Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash 90

The Islamic Jihad terrorist organization on Sunday denied reports that it reached an "understanding" with Israel following the escalation in clashes last week, according to which IDF soldiers could operate on the Gazan side of the security border.

Gazan terrorists repeatedly fired mortars at IDF soldiers last Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, and fired a rocket on Saturday in numerous breaches of the ceasefire that ended 2014 Operation Protective Edge.

The terrorists evidently opened fire because the troops were unearthing their terror tunnels meant to facilitate attacks into sovereign Israel. The IDF responded with tank fire and airstrikes.

But reports that an agreement ending the clashes was reached were "completely untrue" according to Islamic Jihad leader Khalid al-Batsh, as reported by the Palestinian Ma'an News Agency.

He said "the Palestinian team has unequivocally rejected this request" to let the IDF function in the buffer zone region just on the Gazan side of the security barrier, where it has acted to prevent terrorist incursions.

In a confirmation that the upsurge in attacks by the terrorists came as a desperate attempt to prevent the terror tunnels from being discovered, he emphasized that the issue at stake was the IDF operation in the buffer zone.

Al-Batsh said the refusal to allow the IDF to function over the border was a cause for "continued Israeli aggression in Gaza."

"We reiterate our total rejection of this proposal, and we do not accept the concept of a buffer zone in the eastern (Gaza) Strip," al-Batsh said, calling for more attacks targeting IDF activity at the border.

Ironically, Gazan terrorists have remained largely quiet on the massive Egyptian buffer zone in southern Gaza since late 2014, which likewise is a counter-terror tool.

Last Friday Hamas said it isn't looking for war now, changing its tune after warning Israel on Wednesday not to "test its patience" after the first mortar shells were fired.