Hamas Raids U.N. Warehouse

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CBNNews.com - GAZA STRIP - Hamas police raided a UN warehouse in Gaza City on Tuesday evening, confiscating 3,500 blankets and some 400 packages of food.

UNRWA spokesman Christopher Gunness reported the raid on Wednesday, saying the food parcels were to have been delivered to 500 families.

"They were armed," Gunness said. "They seized this; they took it by force," he said, calling it "absolutely unacceptable."

UNRWA released a statement Wednesday condemning the raid "in the strongest possible terms" and asking that the goods be "returned immediately."

The statement further said that UNRWA "has a strict system of monitoring aid delivery and ensuring that its assistance reaches only the intended beneficiaries."

Gunness said police broke into the warehouse and took the food because UNRWA staff refused to turn it over to Hamas's Ministry of Social Affairs.

Israeli Minister of Welfare and Social Services Isaac Herzog called the break-in "further proof that Hamas is continuing to make life miserable for the population of Gaza and will use any means to intensify it suffering."

Hamas officials justified the raid by saying UNRWA was distributing aid to the group's opponents and demanded an immediate apology from the UN "for spreading false news" about the raid.

Meanwhile, IDF (Israel Defense Forces) spokesman Peter Lerner said this is not news to Israelis.

"We have said in the past that we know Hamas is stealing humanitarian aid and donations from international organizations," Lerner said.

Sources: YNet news, The Jerusalem Post

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