US - EU - Israel

Palestinian rocket attack during Ashton's visit to Gaza Strip

Photo: Reuters

A Palestinian rocket was fired into Israel on Thursday, according to the Israeli army, as EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton visited Gaza city. One person is reported dead. Ashton is not going to meet leaders of the Hamas movement, who rule the territory.

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Early reports indicate that a Thai worker was killed by shrapnel from a rocket attack on a kibbutz near Israel's border with Gaza.

Meanwhile, US Middle East envoy George Mitchell will visit the region on Sunday it was announced on Thursday, according to a senior Palestinian official speaking to the AFP news agency.

Dossier: Gaza 2009

His visit had been cancelled amid a row between Washington and Israel.

Ashton’s first point of call was a UN-run girls' school in the Jabalya refugee camp, before she holds talks with UN officials.

However she will not meet with any representatives of the Hamas movement, who remain on EU and US lists of “terrorist” organisations.

Comments from US President Barack Obama on Wednesday and an article from Michael Oren, Israel’s ambassador to Washington, on Thursday reaffirmed the "special bond" between the US and Israel.

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