A senior Hamas official denied reports that a convoy of trucks allegedly attacked by Israeli planes in January was bearing weapons for Gaza. Salah al-Bardawil told the Quds Faras news agency that these were false reports meant to justify an attack on Sudan.
Al-Jazeera broadcasted pictures Thursday of the convoy, which was reportedly hit during the IDF's Operation Cast Lead to prevent the trucks from depositing their load of arms to Hamas at their destination in Gaza.
According to the report, 17 trucks were bombed and 39 people were killed at the time. Meanwhile, Israel released a formal statement that it "does not respond to publications of this kind."
Despite the fact that Israel, like Sudan, has not formally responded to the bombardment, Sudanese politicians confirmed that the attack took place, even though they could not confirm who was responsible for it.
One politician claimed that the attack had left 800 people dead, a quarter of them Sudanese and the rest Eritrean, Ethiopian and Somalian.
Another politician added that the attack took place in a sparsely populated area in the east of the country. He added that an Arab tribe had officially appealed to the government two weeks ago to return the bodies of some 30 people who had been killed in the attack.
Yet another Sudanese politician said that "the only survivor of the attack – an Ethiopian mechanic – told how two planes flew low overhead, passed and returned and then began shooting at the trucks."
Roee Nahmias contributed to this report