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Sunday, 25 November, 2001, 10:52 GMT
Israel retaliates in Gaza
Palestinians carry the coffin of Mahmoud Abu Hanoud
Hamas promised retribution for its leader's death
Palestinian security forces say Israeli helicopter gunships have carried out several attacks in the Gaza Strip.

They report that a police post north of Gaza City was destroyed by missiles and that at Deir el-Balah in central Gaza, buildings belonging to Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat's Fatah group were targeted.

A third attack was reported against security positions near the Khan Younis refugee camp, in southern Gaza.

The strikes came as two United States special envoys are travelling to Israel in an attempt to revive the Middle-East peace process.

On Saturday, a Palestinian mortar attack against the Jewish settlement of Kfar Darom in the Gaza Strip killed one Israeli and injured two others.

Funeral

Tens of thousands of Palestinians turned out in the West Bank city of Jenin on Saturday for the funeral of Mahmud Abu Hanoud, a leader of the militant group Hamas who was assassinated by Israeli security forces on Friday.

Israel had accused him of involvement in suicide attacks on its citizens. Hamas vowed to avenge his death.

US Secretary of State Colin Powell
Colin Powell has despatched envoys to the Middle East
Tension has been high in Gaza for months, with Israeli tanks positioned to protect the Jewish settlers on Israeli-occupied land nearby.

Two United States envoys are travelling to Israel on Sunday to discuss the state of the region's fragile peace process.

Nearly 1,000 people, the majority of them Palestinians, have been killed since the Palestinian uprising against Israeli occupation began in the West Bank and Gaza Strip in September 2000, shortly after peace talks stalled.

The Palestinians accuse Israel of assassinating more than 70 Palestinians since the uprising began last year.

Israel says its policy, widely condemned by its Western allies, is aimed at militants who plan or carry out attacks. Palestinians say it has killed several political activists.

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 ON THIS STORY
The BBC's Jeremy Cooke in Jerusalem
"All this seems to be a response to the killing of an Israeli soldier in a Palestinian attack"

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21 Nov 01 | Middle East
15 Nov 01 | Middle East
01 Aug 01 | Middle East
19 Oct 00 | Profiles
02 Sep 00 | Middle East
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