Monday, 19 December 2011

Hamas commits to non-violent resistance but maintains right to self-defence against Israeli attacks

Hamas has confirmed that it will shift tactics away from violent attacks on Israel as part of a rapprochement with the Palestinian Authority.

A spokesman for the Hamas prime minister, Ismail Haniya, told the Guardian that the Islamic party, which has controlled Gaza for the past five years, was shifting its emphasis from armed struggle to non-violent resistance.

"Violence is no longer the primary option but if Israel pushes us, we reserve the right to defend ourselves with force," said the spokesman, Taher al-Nounu. On this understanding, he said, all Palestinian factions operating in the Gaza Strip have agreed to halt the firing of rockets and mortars into Israel. more

UK to fund construction of 12 new schools for Gaza's children through UN Relief and Works Agency

UNITED KINGDOM, December 18, 2011 (WAFA) - The United Kingdom announced that it would help tackle the desperate need for school places for refugees in Gaza with support for 24,000 children to attend school. Half of these will be girls, Sunday said a press release.

The press release stated that the British support, through the Palestinian Authority – United Nations Trust Fund, will allow the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) to construct 12 new schools.

It added that International Development Secretary, Andrew Mitchell, visited Gaza for the first time to see for himself the work that UNRWA is already doing to address the education problems in Gaza.

It stated that access to education has been severely limited by ongoing movement and access restrictions in Gaza. The refugee student population grew by nearly 10%, 2007 – 2010, while all construction, including schools, was suspended. more