TIMELINE OF MAJOR EVENTS CONCERNING HAMAS
1988 - The covenant of the Islamic Resistance Movement is published. The group presents itself as an alternative to the PLO.
April 1994 - Hamas orchestrates its first suicide bombing. Five are killed in the Israeli city of Hedera.
February to March 1996 - The Palestinian Authority cracks down on Hamas, after a series of Hamas-orchestrated suicide bombings in Israel kill more than 50 people. Palestinian President Yasser Arafat condemns the bombings, referring to them as "a terrorist operation." Later, the PNA arrests approximately 140 suspected Hamas members.
2001 - The U.S. State Department lists Hamas on its official list of terrorist groups.
March 22, 2004 - Hamas leader Yassin is killed by Israeli air strikes.
December 12, 2004 - An attack at a checkpoint on the border between the Gaza Strip and Egypt kills five Israelis. Hamas claims responsibility.
January 25, 2006 - Hamas, running as the "Change and Reform Party," participates for the first time in Palestinian parliamentary elections. The group is fielding 62 candidates.
January 26, 2006 - Hamas wins a landslide victory in the Palestinian legislative elections. Hamas wins 76 seats, and Fatah 43 seats in the 132-seat Palestinian Legislative Council, giving Hamas a majority.
March 29, 2006 - The new Palestinian Prime Minister, Ismail Haniya, and his cabinet are sworn in. The governments of the United States and Canada say they will have no contact with the Hamas-led Palestinian government.
Early June 2007 - After a week of battles between Hamas and Fatah, Hamas seizes control of Gaza.
June 2008 - Cease-fire truce between Hamas and Israel negotiated by Egypt goes into effect. Hamas agrees to stop firing rockets at Israeli border communities and Israel will allow limited trade into and out of Gaza. The cease-fire has a six-month deadline.
December 19, 2008 - Hamas formally ends cease-fire with Israel. Attacks between the two had continued the entire time to some degree, escalating more in November.
From December 24, 2008 - The rocket attacks from Hamas increase and so do the retaliation air strikes from Israel.