GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) – A roadside bomb went off outside a major security headquarters in Gaza City on Friday, in an escalation of attacks on symbols of the Islamic Hamas group’s rule.
No one was injured in the blast, and there was no immediate claim of responsibility. Hamas blamed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah group, whose forces Hamas routed in June to wrest control of Gaza. But Fatah denied responsibility.
Security forces in Gaza described the explosion as the largest in a wave of recent Palestinian bombings against Hamas targets in Gaza.
Ihab al-Ghussain, a Hamas security spokesman, said the roadside bomb was placed on the western wall of the national security headquarters, damaging the wall and nearby houses. “Evidence suggests that Fatah supporters were involved in all the previous explosions,” he said. “We demand from the Fatah leadership … a clear position on these attacks or they will be held directly responsible.”
Fatah denied involvement in the bombing, and accused Hamas of orchestrating the recent explosions in an effort to win sympathy. “We didn’t use arms, and we will not use arms,” said Fatah spokesman Fahmi Zaarir. “The power of the people in Gaza will bring Hamas down.”