Hamas condemns Gaza attack targeting Palestinian Prime Minister Hamdallah

Tuesday, 13 Mar, 2018

Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah was unharmed Tuesday but his Palestinian Authority quickly accused Gaza militants of trying to kill him.

Hamas has controlled Gaza since seizing it from the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority in 2007.

It is Hamdallah's second visit to the Gaza Strip since the signing of an Egyptian-brokered "reconciliation" agreement between the West Bank's governing Fatah faction and Gaza's Hamas rulers late previous year. He said in the address that three cars were damaged.

Hamas condemned President Mahmoud Abbas for blaming it for the blast, and Abbas' security chief, Majed Farraj, said it was "too early" to say who was responsible.

Gaza's Hamas-run interior ministry said the explosion hit as the prime minister's convoy passed near the northern town of Beit Hanoun.

The incident comes amid a fragile reconciliation effort between the Fatah movement, which controls the Palestinian Authority, and Hamas.

Abbas spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeineh said the attack on the consensus government was an attack on the unity of the Palestinian people, according Palestinian news agency WAFA.

Hamdallah was not injured in the explosion, which occurred shortly after his convoy entered for a rare visit to the territory, a security source in the convoy said.