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Hamas: Unilateral Israeli withdrawal does not commit us to anything

Aug. 2, 2014 7:22 P.M. (Updated: Aug. 4, 2014 12:09 P.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said on Saturday that a unilateral Israeli withdrawal would not "commit" the group to anything, stressing that Hamas was ready to continue fighting if necessary.

The comments come after top Israeli officials said that they were no longer willing to take part in negotiations, stressing that any decision on the assault on Gaza would be taken unilaterally.

Abu Zuhri, however, said in a statement that an Israeli unilateral retreat would not "commit" the group to anything, highlighting that the situation in the "field" would determine how Hamas responds to such a move.

"The resistance could fight on despite the fact that they have been fighting for 27 days," Abu Zuhri added.

Abu Zuhri also said that Israel has to pay the price for its actions, adding: "They either stay in Gaza and pay the price, unilaterally retreat and pay, or negotiate and pay."

Israel refused to take part in planned ceasefire talks on Friday, after a 72-hour cease was scuttled in its early hours after Israeli forces killed 16 people immediately beforehand and moved deeper into Gaza.

The move provoked a Hamas operation that killed two soldiers, with Israel saying another soldier was captured but Hamas denying any knowledge.

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