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Israel launches airstrike against Hamas in Gaza

Israeli aircraft bombed a Hamas militant base in the Gaza Strip for the first time since the end of a war in the territory, in response to a rocket that militants launched earlier in the day, the army said.

The bombs struck in the Khan Younis area in the southern Gaza Strip. Local hospital officials said there were no casualties.

The militant rocket fired earlier landed in a field in southern Israel and no one was injured.

Remove Hamas from terrorist list, EU court rules

Palestinian members of Hamas's armed wing taking part in an anti-Israel rally in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip last month. Credit: Reuters

Palestinian Islamist group Hamas should be removed from a European Union list of terror groups, a court has ruled.

The General Court of the European Union said, however, that member states could maintain their freeze on the group's assets for three months to give time for further review or to appeal.

The court said the previous decision to name Hamas on the list had been based on media reports rather than considered analysis.

Hamas says it is a legitimate resistance movement and welcomed the verdict.

However, Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu quickly called on Europe to return Hamas to the list immediately, denouncing it as "a murderous terrorist organisation".


Conflicting autopsy reports after death of Palestinian minister

Israeli and Palestinian officials have issued conflicting accounts over the results of an autopsy on a Palestinian minister who died after being shoved and grabbed by the neck by an Israeli policeman at a West Bank protest on Wednesday.

Ziad Abu Ein appears to be grabbed by an Israeli soldier during the protest. Credit: Reuters

Hussein al-Sheikh, a top Palestinian official, told Reuters that Jordanian and Palestinian doctors involved in the late night examination of the body said Ziad Abu Ein, 55, had died from being struck, inhaling tear gas and not receiving prompt medical attention.

But an Israeli medical source familiar with the autopsy results told Reuters the minister died from a heart attack which may have been brought on by the stress of being grabbed by the neck.

Netanyahu to dissolve Israeli parliament and call election

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said he would dissolve parliament and seek early elections. In a statement from his office, Netanyahu, who is embroiled in a cabinet crisis, also said he has ordered the dismissal of his Finance Minister Yair Lapid and Justice Minister Tzipi Livni, who both head centrist parties.

Netanyahu to dissolve Israeli parliament and call election. Credit: PA

His coalition, dominated by the right-wing, is split on a range of issues, including the 2015 budget, high living costs, policy towards the Palestinians and a Jewish nation-state bill that critics say discriminates against Israel's Arab minority. The divisions had prompted speculation that Netanyahu would bring forward an election that is not scheduled until 2017.


Israel arrests four over alleged Hamas plot

Israel has arrested four Palestinians on suspicion of planning to assassinate Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman with an anti-tank rocket while he drove to his Jewish settlement in the occupied West Bank.

Israel's Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman. Credit: Reuters

The alleged Hamas plot was hatched during the war in Gaza that left more than 2,100Gazans and 73 Israelis dead and 100,000 people homeless.

Israeli authorities said the Palestinians, who live near the Nokdim settlement where Liberman has a home, had carried out surveillance on his convoy and tried to obtain a rocket-propelled grenade with which to attack it.

Two Palestinians shot dead after 'terror attack'

At least three people have been wounded in an attack near a synagogue in Jerusalem. Credit: APTN

Two Palestinian men armed with axes and knives wounded at least three people in a Jerusalem synagogue before they were shot dead by police officers, an Israeli police spokesman said.

A spokesman for Israel's ambulance service said medics were treating three people, and one person was critically wounded.

Media reports said more people at the scene were wounded.

Israeli Defence Forces confirm soldier's death

Members of the Israeli Zaka emergency response team work at the scene of the stabbing. Credit: Reuters

Israel Defence Forces spokesman Peter Lerner has confirmed that a soldier, named as Sergeant Almog Shiloni, has died in hospital after being stabbed earlier today at a train station in Tel Aviv.

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