A fugitive leader of the Palestinian militant group Hamas has appeared in a videotape calling Israel's withdrawal from the Gaza Strip a victory for Palestinian militants.

Mohammed Deif, who has eluded Israeli authorities for more than a decade, said Israel's pullout is a humiliation suffered at the hands of the armed resistance.

The alleged bombmaker, who Israel accuses of being behind a string of suicide bombings, appeared in the video in profile with a dark shadow over his face.

He warned the Palestinian Authority not to try to disarm the militant groups. But he did call for dialogue "to protect our Palestinian blood."

Western news agencies in Gaza received copies of the tape overnight Saturday. They say they believe the tape is authentic.

Some information for this report provided by AP and Reuters.