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Friday, December 15, 2006

'Palestinian' Civil War Watch - Attempt to assassinate Haniyeh

On the way from the Rafah crossing at the Gaza - Egypt border to his home in Gaza City last night, there was an attempt to assassinate Ismail Haniyeh, the 'moderate' 'Palestinian Prime Minister' who is affiliated with Hamas. Haniyeh's 24-year old bodyguard was shot in the head and killed and two people were wounded, including Haniyeh's 27-year old son, Abed. Just another day at the office....

Haniyeh told reporters that Hamas knew who was responsible and how to deal with them. 'Moderate' 'Palestinian President' Mahmoud Abbas Abu Mazen expressed 'deep regret' over the incident, and Israel Radio reported that he is 'closely following developments.'

Last night's agreement to allow Haniyeh back into Gaza without his luggage was negotiated by Egyptian intelligence chief Omar Suleiman.

The Jerusalem Post is reporting that this was just one of several instances of violence yesterday between Hamas and Fatah:
The incident at Rafah comes amid an upsurge in violence between Hamas and Fatah supporters in the West Bank and Gaza Strip following the breakdown of talks over the formation of a unity government.

Three Hamas activists were shot and seriously wounded Thursday when Fatah gunmen opened fire at a Hamas rally in the Balata refugee camp near Nablus. In the evening, a fierce gun battle erupted in the Jabalya refugee camp in the Gaza Strip between members of the Fatah-controlled General Intelligence Force and scores of Hamas militiamen.

In more scenes of anarchy in the Gaza Strip, gunmen belonging to the Popular Resistance Committees, an alliance of several Palestinian armed groups, kidnapped Muhammad Abu Siam, a senior officer with the General Intelligence Force.

The abduction came in response to the detention earlier in the day of Hisham Mukhaimar, a member of the Popular Resistance Committees, on suspicion of involvement in the murder of the three children of a top PA officer earlier this week. Four people were wounded by gunfire during the detention of Mukhaimar, one of them a General Intelligence officer.

In Ramallah, unidentified gunmen fired at the car of Prisoners Affairs Minister Wasfi Kabaha. There were no casualties.

The growing tensions between Hamas and Fatah come as Abbas prepares to deliver a speech to the Palestinian public on Saturday about the failure of the unity government talks.

Although PA officials said they expected Abbas to dissolve the Hamas-led government and call early elections, sources close to the PA chairman noted that he still believed a deal could be reached with Hamas.

A senior PA official in Ramallah criticized the timing of Israel's decision on Haniyeh, saying it was likely to spoil Abbas's efforts to get rid of the Hamas-led government.

"This is a very bad decision because it comes as the president prepares to announce a series of dramatic measures to resolve the crisis in the Palestinian territories," the official said. "This decision has played into the hands of Hamas, whose leaders will now win the sympathy of most Palestinians."
I can't wait to hear Abu Mazen's speech tomorrow. Faster, faster....


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