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Hamas, Gaza's Armed Factions Struggle To Stay Out of Sinai Conflict

Hamas and the main armed factions in Gaza are holding regular meetings to avoid being dragged into conflict in the Sinai.
A funeral convoy carrying the bodies of four Islamist militants drives through Sheikh Zuweid, in the north of the Sinai peninsula, August 10, 2013. The four Islamist militants were killed by an air strike that their comrades said had been done by an Israeli drone but which state media said was the work of an Egyptian army helicopter. REUTERS/ Stringer (EGYPT - Tags: CIVIL UNREST POLITICS) - RTX12G5D
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No one yet knows what effect the Aug. 9 airstrike on Rafah will have on the jihadist militants in Sinai. Thus far, responsibility for the attack has been variously attributed to either or both the Egyptian and Israeli militaries amid indications of possible high-level cooperation between them in its execution.

Another development, no less important, is that the bombardment has sent ripples throughout the Gaza Strip, where militant groups have been anxiously contemplating the possibility that future strikes might target Gaza. This would likely take place under the pretext that Gazan militant groups have been complicit in events in the Sinai, despite repeated denials, especially from Hamas, whose spokesman Sami Abu Zahri condemned Aug. 12 statements by Maj. Gen. Ahmed Wasfi, the second field commander of the Egyptian army, alleging as such.

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