The Hamas-led government in Gaza stated Saturday that it did not apologize for Israeli civilian deaths during the Israeli offensive against the Gaza Strip.The statements of Hamas came in its report responding to the report of Judge Richard Goldstone.
Hamas said that resistance is an internationally guaranteed right, and that the Palestinians, living under Israeli occupation and aggression, have the internationally guaranteed right to resist the occupation.
The government added that the report it submitted in response to the Goldstone report, did not include any apology and that some of its articles were misinterpreted.
It also said that the United Nations did not yet respond to the report of Hamas.
Hamas added that the response was submitted by the government in Gaza and not by the movement itself. It also stated that Israel refuses to cooperate with international bodies probing the war, an issue that indicates that the army deliberately targeted civilians.
The response of the Hamas-led government was submitted last Wednesday.
The Goldstone report was issued in September 2009, and called on both Israel and Hamas to conduct independent investigations.
Israel embarked its war on Gaza on December 27; the war lasted for 22 days and led to the death of more than 1415 Palestinians, mainly children and women.
Thousands of civilians were wounded, hundreds serious. Death toll arrived, according to some reports, to nearly 1600 as dozens of residents died of their wounds later on.
Nine soldiers were killed during the war, five of them were killed by friendly fire, and four Israeli civilians also died by Palestinian fire and shells.
Meanwhile, a report issued by Fateh movement, the rival of Hamas, called on the movement to apologize for “the killing of hundreds of Palestinians when the movement took over the Gaza Strip, pushing hundreds of Fateh leaders to flee the coastal region”.
Fateh spokesperson, Ahmad Assaf, said that he is puzzled by the stance of Hamas “apologizing to Israel while refusing to apologize to the Palestinians”.
Assaf called on Hamas to apologize to the Palestinian people for what he described as its “coup” in Gaza, and to apologize “for what it did to Fateh members and supporters in the Gaza Strip”.
He also accused Hamas of obstructing national unity talks by refusing to sign the Egyptian document.
Assaf added that Hamas is admitting now that its “arbitrary missiles and its methods of resistance do not serve the interests of the Palestinian people”.
Hamas spokesperson, Sami Abu Zuhri, stated in an interview with the Qatar-based Al Jazeera news agency on Saturday night that the stances of President Mahmoud Abbas do not provide a suitable atmosphere to reconciliation, and added that Hamas is ready and willing to achieve unity.
Abu Zuhri added that the issue with the Egyptian document is that it is not coherent with previous national unity understandings.
“We called on Cairo to bring Fateh and Hamas together in a meeting in the country to look for a solution”. Abu Zuhri stated, “We are still awaiting the Egyptian response”.