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I am writing to draw your attention to an alarming development in our region. Hamas is once again preparing to go on the offensive by rearming, rebuilding its terror infrastructure and reaffirming its commitment to waging war against Israel.
Hamas has been working around the clock to rebuild its weapons production and military capabilities. The internationally recognized terrorist group is determined to attack Israel by land, air and sea. On 19 January 2015, the Israeli navy intercepted a vessel headed to Gaza and carrying materials and parts for rocket and mortar production.
Instead of reconstructing Gaza, Hamas is reconstructing its terror infrastructure and has test fired approximately 90 rockets from Gaza into the Mediterranean Sea since December. The terrorist group is aggressively taxing the people of Gaza and directing hundreds of millions annually towards rebuilding its terror activities rather than towards the humanitarian needs of the Palestinian people in Gaza.
Hamas is also vigorously working to reconstruct its terror tunnels. These tunnels are used to conduct incursions into Israeli territory and carry out attacks against Israeli civilians. These tunnels are intentionally built beneath civilian facilities such as homes, mosques and schools.
Senior Hamas officials such as Mahmoud Al-Zahar openly boast about the non-stop work taking place to repair the tunnel systems, declaring: “Nothing can stop the process of preparing for the next confrontation [with Israel]”. Since the summer, Hamas has recruited, indoctrinated and trained 2,500 young adults between the ages of 14 and 20 to build a “popular army” that integrates civilians in Hamas fighting terrorist units.
There is no doubt that Hamas is preparing for another confrontation. Israel cannot be expected to stand by as its soldiers and citizens are repeatedly put at risk. I urge the Security Council to address this issue immediately, before the situation escalates further.
I should be grateful if you would have the present letter distributed as a document of the Security Council.