Hamas chief Khaled Meshaal says Israel’s ground operation in Gaza is destined to fail.
“What the occupier Israel failed to achieve through its air and sea raids, it will not be able to achieve with a ground offensive,” Meshaal told AFP from exile in the Qatari capital Doha.
“It is bound to fail.”
A Hamas spokesman in Gaza said earlier Israel would “pay a high price” for launching the ground operation and the Islamist Palestinian movement “is ready for the confrontation”.
Meshaal said Hamas has “clear demands”, including an end to “the aggression and collective punishment against our people in Gaza and in the West Bank, as well as the lifting of the Gaza siege”.
He insisted the “source of the problem lies with the Israeli occupation and the construction of settlements”, which he said the Palestinian people were “determined to get rid of sooner or later”.
He did not elaborate.
He called on the international community to “assume its responsibility and put an end to Israeli terrorism”.