GAZA, Aug. 22 (Xinhua) -- A senior Islamic Hamas movement official said on Friday that the issue of disarming his movement is non-negotiable.
Hamas strongman Mahmoud al-Zahar said in a brief news statement that the "Palestinian resistance" will not accept any international decisions that call for disarming the Palestinian factions and might ignore ending the blockade of Gaza.
Zahar's statement came in response to a European initiative, launched by Germany, France and England on Thursday, which urges an immediate and sustainable ceasefire that would put an end to the rockets firing and military operations in the Gaza Strip.
The initiative calls for the disarmament of Hamas and other Palestinian groups, the return of the Palestinian National Authority to Gaza which has been under Hamas control for the past seven years, a lifting of the Israeli blockade and the resumption of peace talks between the two sides based on the 1967 border.
The European initiative came as fighting flared on the ground and an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire talks hit a brick wall with the renewal of hostilities between the Gaza Strip and Israel after two weeks of calm.
On Thursday night, a fresh Israeli airstrike on central Gaza Strip killed two Palestinians and wounded three others, local medics and eyewitnesses said.
According to Palestinian medics, more than 2,070 Palestinians have been killed and 10,000 others injured since the Israeli offensive started; 68 Israelis, including 64 soldiers, also died in the hostilities.