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Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

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August 5th, 2014
06:30 PM ET

Abbas adviser won’t condemn attacks from Gaza population centers

(CNN) – In the last moments before this fragile 72-hour cease-fire kicked in,
both sides got off some parting shots. CNN teams on the ground actually witnessed one Israeli strike on Gaza City early Tuesday morning, and heard several others.

And, according to the Israel Defense Forces, about 20 rockets were also fired from Gaza toward Israel minutes before the cease-fire went into effect.

Reporters from NDTV, an Indian news network, said they watched from their hotel room window as one of those rockets was prepared and launched from a packed civilian area of Gaza. The station showed video of the attack.

Senior Palestinian negotiator Mohammad Shtayyeh, also an adviser to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, would not condemn Hamas firing rockets right next to population centers.

"We have to understand that it is Israel who started this had aggression on Gaza. And the people in Gaza – if Israel has the right to defend itself, I assume that any nation in the world, any human being in the world has also the right to defend himself," Shtayyeh said in an interview with CNN's "The Lead with Jake Tapper."

"There is an attack on civilians. Whatever there does not justify killing 1,600 people, 85% of them are children, kids, civilians and so on. Obviously, we don't like all of this war at all. We want it to stop," said Shtayyeh.

For more of our interview with senior Palestinian negotiator Mohammad Shtayyeh, check out the video above.

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