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Hamas offers condolences to family of teen responsible for bus bombing

April 25, 2016 12:27 A.M. (Updated: April 25, 2016 3:57 P.M.)
(AFP/Hazem Bader, File)
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) -- The Hamas movement on Sunday offered condolences to the family of a 19-year-old Palestinian who died after bombing a Jerusalem bus last week.

Deputy chairmen of the movement, Ismail Haniya, phoned the family of Abd al-Hamid Abu Srour in Bethlehem’s Aida refugee camp, praising the young man’s attack that left 20 injured last Monday, Hamas said in a statement.

“The blood of martyrs is a beacon of light for those treading the path of liberation.” Haniya told the family.

Hamas claimed Abu Srour was a “committed activist” for the movement hours after he died Tuesday from severe wounds sustained during the Jerusalem attack.

Israeli police confirmed Thursday that Abu Srour was responsible for the attack, while Israel’s police and security agency Shin Bet previously confirmed a Hamas member carried out the bombing. A number of suspected Hamas activists have been detained since.

Amnesty International later demanded Hamas condemn the attack, on the grounds that “deliberate attacks on civilians” could never be justified.

Amnesty said that while it it was not initially clear that Hamas’ leadership or military wing had ordered the bombing, the potential involvement of the group in the attack was a “worrying development.”

The attack was the most recent to be carried out amid a slew of small-scale attacks launched by Palestinians -- the majority on Israeli military targets and illegal settlements -- that have left nearly 30 Israelis dead.

The bombing came despite an apparent lull in the wave of unrest that began in October, and marked the first time an Israeli bus was targeted since the end of the Second Intifada.

Hamas -- alongside a number of other Palestinian factions -- immediately after the bus bombing said it was a "natural reaction" to the decades-long Israeli military occupation.
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