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Israel said to halt third Qatar cash transfer to Gaza after recent rocket attack

FILE- Palestinian Hamas government employees queue to receive 60 percent of their long-overdue salaries in Gaza City, Friday, Nov. 9, 2018. Gaza's Hamas rulers received dollars 15 million from Qatar to help pay the salaries of their civil servants.
AP Photo/Adel Hana

A third installment of 15$ million in Qatari funds will not reach the Hamas-run Gaza Strip this week, according to Palestinian media reports Monday.

The reports claim Israel’s government halted the transfer following a rocket launched from Gaza at the city of southern city Ashkelon overnight.

However, reports from earlier this week indicate the delay may be a result of other factors.

The cash transfers were first approved by Israel, which disqualified hundreds of Gazans from receiving funds based on connections to Hamas’ military wing.

The funds total $90 million, with the next installment expected to be the last.

In early December, Palestinian sources confirmed the second installment of funds, about $25 million, was delivered.

Qatar had previously announced there would be six instalments of $15 million, but the package contained $25 million, divided as such: $5 million for salaries, $5 million for unemployment, and $5 million for humanitarian relief.

Ex-Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman, who has been highly critical of the cash transfers, expressed his hope “that this decision is final and not related to the elections.”

“I hope we won’t see Netanyahu renewing the money transfers to Hamas after April 9. There should be no more compensation until our soldiers and citizens can return home,” Liberman said.

Israel’s Air Force (IAF) carried out retaliatory airstrikes on Hamas positions in Gaza after at least one projectile fired from the coastal enclave triggered red alert sirens in Israel’s southern coastal region late Sunday.

Local residents reported hearing explosions, presumably made by the Iron Dome missile defense system intercepting the rocket.

"Earlier tonight, one launch was identified from the Gaza Strip at Israeli territory. In response, IDF fighter jets and an attack helicopter targeted a number of Hamas terror targets within the organization's military camp in the Northern Gaza Strip."

"The IDF will continue to operate in order to protect Israeli civilians from acts of terror emanating from the Gaza Strip. The Hamas terror organization is accountable for all events transpiring in the Gaza Strip and from it and will bear the consequences for its actions," the statement concluded.

On Sunday evening, the IDF confirmed that combat helicopters struck two Hamas positions in Gaza in retaliation for incendiary balloons launched from the enclave.

Last week, a projectile fired from the coastal enclave marking the first exchange of fire from Gaza and retaliatory air strikes by Israel for the first time since a ceasefire ended a major flare-up in November.

Comments

(1)

I am shocked that all along prior to this Israel has allowed cash transfers to Gaza?!!!!! You mean all those kite flying instances weren't enough to stop cash transfers. What gives with you Israelis? Do you not want to take action against your enemies and defeat them?

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