Renewed factional violence in Gaza; interior minister resigns

Monday, May 14, 2007

A ceasefire between armed factions of the Palestinian groups Fatah and Hamas broke down hours after it came into effect, prompting the Interior Minister Hani Qawasmi to offer his resignation.

Hamas and Fatah officials said Sunday that the cease-fire would begin at 1:00 a.m. local time. The ceasefire between their armed factions was mediated by Egypt, but it did not last until sunrise.

A unity government including both groups was formed in February.

Violence in the Gaza strip has claimed the lives of seven people in two days.

Qawasmi had offered to resign on earlier occasions, and this time it was accepted by Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh.