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Beit Hanoun mayor to Sderot mayor: Palestinians already wanted truce

Feb. 24, 2008 2:26 P.M. (Updated: Feb. 24, 2008 2:26 P.M.)
Gaza - Ma'an - Palestinians had already been demanding a long-term ceasefire when the mayor of the Israeli town Sderot called for a truce, the mayor of the Palestinian city of Beit Hanoun, Muhammad Kafarna, said on Sunday.

Kafarna was commenting on the call by Sderot Mayor Eli Moyal for a ceasefire with the Palestinians.

While Sderot suffers a state of horror due to the sounds of explosions, Beit Hanoun suffers Israeli raids which target Palestinian civilians on a daily basis, said Al-Kafarna. He said the most recent raid targeted a group of young men who were attacked while trying to get relief from the crippling Israeli siege. Three people were been killed in that attack.

Sderot, the city targeted most by Palestinian resistance groups with homemade projectiles, is across the border from Beit Hanoun. Sderot Mayor Eli Moyal told the UK Guardian newspaper this weekend, "I would say to Hamas, let's have a ceasefire, let's stop the rockets for the next 10 years and we will see what happens," said Eli Moyal, the mayor, who is a member of the rightwing Likud party. "For me as a person the most important thing is life and I'm ready to do everything for that. I'm ready to talk to the devil."

Moyal later said that his comments were taken out of context.

The mayor of Bait Hanoun explained that the Palestinians are trying to defend themselves against the brutality of the Israeli troops who even targeting women, children, the elderly and health and educational services.

Kafarna advised the mayor of Sderot to watch TV and see the huge destruction which the Israeli military tanks caused to the infrastructure and the groves of Beit Hanoun. He reaffirmed that it is Israeli military operations that push the Palestinian resistance groups to defend themselves.

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