Brotherhood: Israel Seeking Political Gain in Gaza

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JERUSALEM, Israel -- The Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party accused Israel of stoking the flames in Gaza to achieve political gains in the upcoming January election; it also accused Israel of "military escalation" there.

"In the framework of elections that Israel is witnessing is a recent military escalation against occupied Gaza and the occupied Golan Heights," the Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party said in a statement released on Tuesday.

Never mind that Palestinians fired more than 120 rockets and mortars on southern Israel since Saturday, continuing the rocket bombardment that began last weekend.

Israel responded to the attacks with pinpoint airstrikes on munitions factories, weapons warehouses, launch pads and smuggling tunnels in the Gaza Strip.

Tuesday's remarks by the Brotherhood echoed a similar statement last week by Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum. (Hamas is an offshoot of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood.)

"We will not allow Palestinian blood to be the price for electoral and political achievements in Israel," Barhoum told the press last week.

Meanwhile, the Brotherhood's main body released a statement of its own accusing Israel of racism.

"The killing of tens of our innocent Palestinian brothers is part of a link in a chain of oppression and Judaization that seeks to impose itself on the ground and that will never materialize with Allah's will," the statement read.

Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi has not countered any of the anti-Israel statements.

Since taking office in June, Morsi, a lifelong Brotherhood member, has been walking a fine line, promising to respect international treaties, including the 1979 peace treaty with Israel, on the one hand while simultaneously "ignoring" statements by fellow Islamists.

Three weeks ago, Egyptian state television aired a video showing Morsi appearing to agree in prayer with Muslim cleric Futouh Abd al-Nabi Mansour as he called for "the destruction and the dispersal of the Jews."

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YNet contributed to this report.

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