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Coronavirus

Hamas Leader in the Gaza Strip Has Contracted the Coronavirus

December 1, 2020

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — The Islamic militant group Hamas says its leader in the Gaza Strip has contracted the coronavirus.

Hamas says Yehiya Sinwar was tested after he showed symptoms and the infection was confirmed. It says he is “in good health and conducting his work with adherence to safety measures.”

Hamas has ruled Gaza since taking over the territory from the rival Palestinian Authority in 2007. Sinwar has led the group in Gaza, its central base, since 2017.

Previously, he spent two decades in Israeli prisons after being convicted of planning an operation in which two Israelis were killed. He was freed in a 2011 prisoner swap between Israel and Hamas.

Gaza, which is under a tight Israeli-Egyptian blockade, reported its first case of community transmission of coronavirus in August. Since then, the outbreak has quickly spread.

Health authorities have confirmed 21,000 cases and 111 deaths, including a record nine deaths reported on Tuesday.

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