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Erdogan says Israel will be held to account for Gaza
by Staff Writers
Cairo (AFP) Nov 17, 2012

Hackers down hundreds of Israeli sites over Gaza
Tel Aviv (AFP) Nov 17, 2012 - Online activist group Anonymous said on Saturday it had downed the websites of dozens of Israeli state agencies and a top bank in protest over the Jewish state's deadly air assault on Gaza.

The hackers said their operation "OpIsrael" had either damaged or completely erased the sites of more than 650 private and public institutions that included the Bank of Jerusalem -- one of the country's main finance houses.

"Bank of Jerusalem database has been deleted," the group said in a tweet next to a link to the lender's non-functioning website.

It also claimed to have briefly downed the foreign ministry website in protest over an alleged Israeli threat to cut the Gaza Strip's Internet communications.

"For far too long, Anonymous has stood by with the rest of the world and watched in despair the barbaric, brutal and despicable treatment of the Palestinian people in the so called 'Occupied Territories' by the Israel Defence Force," Anonymous said in a statement.

"But when the government of Israel publicly threatened to sever all Internet and other telecommunications into and out of Gaza they crossed a line in the sand."

The group threatened Israel with the "unbridled wrath of Anonymous" if it went ahead with the Internet cable cut.

Israel's foreign ministry was not immediately available for comment on the threat, and no reference to the hack attack was made in official government statements on Saturday.

Israel has been pressing an intense aerial assault over the coastal Palestinian enclave as militants from the ruling Hamas movement and other groups have fired hundreds of rockets over the border.

The intensifying stand-off has also played out over the Internet.

Militants have used social networking sites such as Twitter to promise new attacks and take credit for specific strikes.

Meanwhile, Israeli defence officials have used Twitter to provide real-time warnings about incoming rockets and also make direct threats against Hamas.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Saturday that Israel would be held to account for the children among 40 people dead in three days of air strikes on Gaza.

"Everyone must know that sooner or later there will be a holding to account for the massacre of these innocent children killed inhumanely in Gaza," he said in a speech at Cairo University.

Erdogan, who had earlier met President Mohamed Morsi, has blamed Israel for the latest round of fighting around the Gaza Strip.

The United States wants both Turkey and Egypt to pressure Gaza's Hamas rulers to stop firing rockets into Israel.

Qatar to give Egypt $10 mn for Gaza wounded
Doha (AFP) Nov 17, 2012 - Qatar is to give Egypt $10 million (7.8 million euros) to help treat Palestinians wounded in Israeli air strikes on the neighbouring Gaza Strip, state news agency QNA reported on Saturday.

The oil-rich Gulf nation will also send emergency aid including medical equipment and medicines to Hamas-controlled Gaza, it said.

Qatari ruler Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani made the decision on a visit to Cairo to meet President Mohamed Morsi to discuss the Gaza crisis, it said.

Morsi, an Islamist linked to Hamas through the Muslim Brotherhood, sent his Prime Minister Hisham Qandil to Gaza on Friday on a visit to show solidarity with the Palestinian territory.

Qatar, which supported the uprisings in Arab Spring countries that gave power to Islamist movements last year, said in October it would invest $400 million in rebuilding Gaza.

Gaza was devastated by Israel's Operation Cast Lead offensive in December 2008 and January 2009, which claimed the lives of 1,400 Palestinians and 13 Israelis.

The investment announcement was made on a visit by the emir, the first by a head of state to Gaza since Hamas took control of it in 2007.

Israeli air strikes in the territory killed 10 people on Saturday, raising the total number of Palestinians killed to 40 in just over 72 hours of bombardment that began on Wednesday, according to Gaza's emergency services.

A further 393 Palestinians have been injured, they said.

In the same period, three Israelis have been killed by rocket fire from Gaza and another 18 injured, 10 of them soldiers, police and the army said.

Jordan king tells Clinton 'deeply worried' about Gaza
Amman (AFP) Nov 16, 2012 - Jordan's King Abdullah II on Friday told US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton in a phone call that he was "deeply worried" about Israel's air strikes on the Gaza Strip, a palace statement said.

"Clinton telephoned the king, who said he was deeply worried about the dangerous repercussions of Israel's aggression on Gaza and its impact on the region," the statement added.

The king, whose country has a 1994 peace agreement with the Jewish state, "warned against Israel's military escalation, stressing that more international efforts are needed to stop it," the palace said.

The government in Amman has condemned Israel's harshest Gaza operation in four years that was launched on Wednesday, killing Hamas military chief Ahmed Jaabari in a surgical air strike on a car in Gaza City.

Israeli attacks on the enclave have killed 29 Palestinians since Wednesday.

Clinton, who is in Asia, has also spoken twice with her Egyptian counterpart Mohammed Amr since the start of the Israeli operation.

"In all of the conversations that she has had... we all agree on the need to de-escalate this conflict," State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said in Washington.

Clinton was also expected to be in contact with "countries with influence, to try to maximize the pressure we can bring to bear on Hamas to cease and desist," Nuland added.

Clinton has not yet spoken with Palestinian Authority leaders in the West Bank, Nuland added.


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Israel Gaza raids kill 15, Arabs urge policy review
Gaza City, Palestinian Territories (AFP) Nov 17, 2012
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