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Jihad official tells Hamas inquiry must be fair

June 24, 2013 1:14 P.M. (Updated: June 25, 2013 7:01 P.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Islamic Jihad leader Ahmad al-Mdlal said Monday that Hamas police made a mistake in killing one of it's members during a gunfight and called for a fair inquiry into the death.

Hamas' interior ministry commissioned the inquiry Monday following the death of Raed Qassim Jundeyeih, a member of Islamic Jihad's militant wing, the Al-Quds Brigades, who died on Sunday after being shot a day earlier by Hamas police officers.

Al-Mdlal told Ma'an that his movement's relationship with Hamas "is still the same and has not changed," despite Islamic Jihad saying Sunday that it was temporarily suspending ties with the Gaza government.

Jundeyeih's family said the pathologist's report confirmed he had died of wounds caused by Hamas police bullets.

Hamas government spokesman Ihab al-Ghussein said: "I hope everyone will await the results of the commission of inquiry which has begun its work."

Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said "contacts are continuing between Hamas and Islamic Jihad, which have strong ties".

The interior ministry said Jundiya had opened fire on police, prompting them to respond.

Police had gone to an address in Gaza City on Saturday to deliver summons orders to a member of the Jundeyeih family. Upon approaching the home, members of the family opened fire at the officers and Jundeyeih was wounded in the ensuing gunfight.

One of the Jundeyeih relatives is on the panel investigating the death.

The Islamic Jihad leader also reiterated earlier party comments that Jundeyeih had been a "wanted" man by Israel.

"Killing Raed Jundeyeih is like giving a free gift to Israel," al-Mdlal told Ma'an.

Islamic Jihad denies rocket fire

Al-Mdlal denied that Islamic Jihad had launched rockets into southern Israel on Sunday evening, saying: "Rocket fire is a normal response to the Israeli crimes."

The Israeli army shelled Gaza overnight in response to rocket fire, saying it targeted two weapon storage facilities and a rocket launch site and that Israel's Iron Dome missile defense system had intercepted two rockets.

Locals said four Islamic Jihad military sites were hit in the air raid, as well as tunnels along the Gaza-Egypt border and empty areas.

Speaking to public radio on Monday morning, head of the parliamentary foreign and defense committee Avigdor Lieberman said Israel should consider reoccupying the Gaza Strip and "cleansing" it.
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