Gaza bank hit by explosion

An explosion hit a Palestinian bank in the Gaza Strip, destroying an ATM, witnesses said, but there were no reports of injuries.

AFP| Updated: Jan 10, 2015, 19:11 PM IST

Gaza City: An explosion hit a Palestinian bank in the Gaza Strip, destroying an ATM, witnesses said, but there were no reports of injuries.

The Gaza interior ministry said an investigation had been opened into the blast yesterday at a central Gaza City branch of the Bank of Palestine, which it blamed on "unidentified persons".

Later in the night there was an explosion in the empty Gaza residence of consensus government spokesman Ihab Bseiso, who lives in the West Bank city of Ramallah.

Bseiso said in a statement that he had received threats in the 24 hours preceeding the incident but the interior ministry said the explosion was caused by a faulty electricity generator.

The consensus government was formed in June in the wake of a conciliation agreement meant to repair the rift existing since June 2007 when Hamas seized control in Gaza, forcing out its rivals in Fatah, the movement of Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas.

The government has said it will re-hire thousands of public sector employees laid off after the Hamas takeover, potentially threatening the jobs of more than 50,000 Gazans hired by Hamas to replace them.

Their fate has been at the heart of a bitter dispute between Hamas and the new government headed by prime minister Rami Hamdallah.