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After Syria Strike, Palestinians Might Hit Israel Abroad

   
GAZA CITY, October 5 - Though no such decision has been taken, Palestinian resistance factions might take the battle against Israel outside the occupied Palestinian territories now that Israel has bombarded a Palestinian camp in Syria, Palestinian resistance leaders and experts told IslamOnline.net Sunday, October 5.

Israeli warplanes mounted an air strike on Ain as-Saheb area some 15 kilometers west of Damascus, despite the disengagement signed by both countries in 1974.

"This escalation opens the door before all options and the Zionist enemy would reap what they have sown…Israel has taken such a hysteric decision, paying no heed to international law or conventions," said Adnan Asfour, a Hamas leader in Nablus.

He, however, said Hamas is still committed to fighting the Israeli occupation inside the occupied Palestinian territories.

"But the Israeli violations could force the Palestinian resistance movements to give their policies second reading," he warned.

Khedr Habib, an Islamic Jihad leader, denied his movement had any military bases on the Syrian territories.

"We neither have military bases nor training camps on the Syrian territories as claimed by Israel.

"These claims are sheer calumnies," he averred, noting that he did not know for sure where the Israeli warplanes struck.

Habib further said that Palestinian resistance movements would be placed on maximum alert following the Israeli escalation.

"We are fighting a nasty enemy targeting our cadres and activists," he asserted.

Dragging Syria

For his part, Ashraf al-Agrami, a Gaza-based political analyst, said the Israeli air strike was meant to dragging Syria into a confrontation.

"It marks a strategic shift in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, given that it broadens the scope of the conflict to embroil Syria into a confrontation," he said.

"The strike, in effect, signaled the Israeli failure to stamp out Palestinian resistance inside the Palestinian territories or to provide security to the Israelis," Agrami maintained.

On shifting the battle ground outside the occupied Palestinian territories, the expert said it is not on the agenda for the time being.

Adli Sadik, another Palestinian analyst, said the Israeli raid served as a message for all Arab countries that they should all help rein in Palestinian resistance movements.

He added that Israel probably wanted only to flex its muscles, given that the Islamic Jihad denied having any military bases or training camps in Syria.

Sadik also ruled out that the Islamic Jihad would target Israeli interests abroad.

He also said that targeting Israeli interests abroad had never been on the agenda of Palestinian resistance movements, who are fully aware of "regional considerations."

It is the first time since the 1974 disengagement that Israel struck deep inside the Syrian territories.

In July 2001, Israeli warplanes destroyed a Syrian radar station and wounded three soldiers in eastern Lebanon.
  
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