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Top Hamas official: Al-Aqsa Storm 'opportunity' to finish off enemy, end Israeli occupation

Palestinians celebrate as an Israeli military vehicle burns after it was hit by Palestinian resistance fighters, who infiltrated areas in the southern part of Israeli-occupied territories, on the other side of the border, on October 7, 2023. (Photo by Reuters)

A former head of the Palestinian Hamas resistance movement has praised the ongoing anti-Israeli Operation al-Aqsa Storm as an opportunity to pull the plug on Israel.

“Operation Al-Aqsa storm is the opportunity for the Palestinians, Arabs and Muslims to finish off the enemy, end the Israeli occupation, release the prisoners, and break the siege on Gaza. The Zionist regime has destroyed the [so-called] two-state solution, and we have no choice but to resist,” Khaled Meshaal said on Monday evening.

The head of the Palestinian group's office in the diaspora added that the belligerent policies and criminal activities of the occupying Tel Aviv regime will leave the Palestinian nation with no option other than resistance, emphasizing that Palestinians have a deep yearning for freedom, liberation, and an end to the occupation.

“Palestinians have no choice other than resistance. Currently, there are no talks about ceasefire. We will defeat occupiers in case of a ground incursion into the Gaza Strip,” Meshaal noted.

He went on to say that the Israeli military suffered an ignominious defeat in the wake of the Palestinian operation, adding that the regime is seeking to burnish its public image and eke out a bogus victory.

The Israeli army is taking revenge on civilians and ordinary people in Gaza, the senior Hamas leader said.

“The resistance front has developed various ground, naval and aerial scenarios. The Zionist regime’s army has been thrown into a state of total confusion,” Meshaal said.

He described Israel as a paper regime, saying, “Is it the same entity that used to scare the entire region?! The primary goal of the Israeli onslaught on the Gaza Strip has always been defined as the destruction of Hamas.”

“Our people in Gaza will not leave their homeland as they have deep roots in the area. Palestinians’ refusal of the Israeli army order to evacuate the northern Gaza Strip is an irreversible decision, and also in the best interest of Egypt,” Meshaal said.

The top Hamas leader also extended gratitude to fighters from the Lebanese Hezbollah resistance movement for launching a series of attacks on Israeli military posts on the border between the Arab country and the occupied territories.

“Hezbollah has carried out several attacks that deserve praise and acclaim. It is in our interest to fight together on the same front,” Meshaal said.

On October 7, Hamas launched Operation Al-Aqsa Storm deep into the territories occupied by the Israeli regime. The operation involved large-scale air, land, and sea strikes.

The group said the operation was a reaction to the recurring desecration of the al-Aqsa Mosque in occupied al-Quds as well as intensified Israeli atrocities against Palestinians in the occupied West Bank.

Israel responded with intensive air strikes on civilian targets in the Gaza Strip, killing at least 2,866 Palestinians in Gaza and wounding some 12,000 others, according to the territory’s health ministry.

The regime has also intensified the siege of Gaza, leaving the city, home to more than 2 million Palestinians, without water, electricity, fuel and internet.

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