Gunmen Vandalize U.N. Summer Camp in Gaza

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GAZA STRIP - Masked gunmen attacked a children's summer camp in the Gaza Strip, run by UNRWA.

The gunmen, who identified themselves as "The Free of the Homeland" group, tied up the camp's security guard, burned down the tents and destroyed the bathrooms, U.N. official John Ging told Army Radio on Sunday.

After pillaging the facility, they left behind a threatening note and three bullets, warning Ging he would be killed if the U.N. does not call off plans to conduct summer camp programs for 250,000 Gaza children.

Hamas, the Palestinian faction that took control of the Gaza Strip in a bloody military coup in June 2007, runs its own summer camps, where children learn military tactics for future use against the Israeli "occupiers."

Since its takeover three years ago, Hamas has been instituting sharia (Islamic) law, dispatching "modesty patrols" to police the streets, shopping areas and beaches, looking for women improperly dressed according to Islam or behaving in any way deemed inappropriate for Muslims.

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AP contributed to this report.

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