GAZA CITY, Palestinian Territories (AFP) - The armed wing of Hamas warned foreign airlines on Wednesday against flying into Tel Aviv, threatening to step up its six-week conflict with Israel and declaring truce talks in Cairo over.
"We are warning international airlines and press them to stop flying into Ben Gurion airport from 6am (11am Singapore time) Thursday," said Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades spokesman Abu Obeida in a televised speech.
Dressed in military fatigues with his face wrapped in a red and white chequered headscarf, he said Hamas was abandoning efforts to negotiate a durable ceasefire with Israel at Egyptian-brokered talks.
"We are calling on the Palestinian delegation to withdraw immediately from Cairo and not to return," said Abu Obeida in a speech broadcast on Hamas's Al-Aqsa TV channel.
"There will be no return to talks after today and any move in this direction will never achieve any result," he added.
"The enemy lost a golden chance to reach a ceasefire with limited demands, for which it will pay after today."
The wife and seven-month-old son of the Qassam Brigades' commander Mohammed Deif were killed in an Israeli air strike on a building in Gaza City late Tuesday, but Hamas said Deif was still alive.
"The Zionist enemy failed to assassinate general commander Abu Khaled," said the spokesman, using Deif's nom de guerre.
The conflict between Israel and Hamas has killed 2,047 Palestinians and 67 on the Israeli side since July 8.
Palestinian emergency services say more than 10,240 Palestinians have been wounded.