Palestinians injured in Israeli attack on Gaza

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"Hamas and Fatah are asking Egypt to postpone the transfer of the government roles from December 1 to December 10 in order to finalise arrangements to ensure the completion of national reconciliation steps", said a statement from Hamas, the rulers of the Gaza Strip.

While the Hamas terror group may have not carried out the attack, the IDF stated that it "views the Hamas terror group as responsible for all events that occur in Gaza", as it rules the Gaza Strip.

Israel blamed Islamic Jihad for the mortar fire.

"During the past hour, and parallel to the false alarm in Sha'ar HaNegev, a number of mortar rounds were fired at a military post adjacent to the northern Gaza Strip", the army said in a statement earlier on Thursday, shortly after rocket sirens sounded in the south of the country. Witnesses in the southern Gaza Strip said two Islamic Jihad posts was hit there. Four of these positions were in northern Gaza and the other two were in northeastern Gaza. Seven Palestinians were killed in the initial attack, and Israel later said it had recovered the bodies of five more militants who were reported missing.

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Sharp disagreements remained between Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas's Fatah, based in the occupied West Bank, and Hamas, particularly over the fate of public employees in Gaza and security control of the enclave. But the tunnel incident also has increased friction between Israel and Islamic Jihad, the second-largest militant group in the strip, which had threatened revenge for the deaths of its fighters.

"The Palestinian resistance has the full right to defend and respond to this risky escalation".

Israel also is building an underground barrier to prevent tunnels from crossing into Israel.

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