Monday, 17 August 2009

15 mortos, 120 feridos em confrontos em Gaza


15 killed, 120 injured in Gaza clashes

Palestinian medical sources in the Gaza Strip reported that the number of Palestinians killed in the clashes between Hamas security forces and an outlawed Salafi fundamental group in Rafah, in the southern part of the Gaza Strip, now stands at 15, while some 120 Palestinians were injured.

Sheikh Mousa and his Salafist fighters - Image by Maan News Agency
Sheikh Mousa and his Salafist fighters - Image by Maan News Agency

The clashes started after the Salafi and Jihad group announced the establishment of an Emirate in Rafah as a starting point.

Mohammad Al Shimaly, a senior of the Al Qassam brigades, 36, the armed wing of Hamas, was among the slain Palestinians. 120 were injured; at least 20 are in senior conditions.

The clashes started following the ‘declaration of the Salafi Emirate’ at a local mosque in Rafah. Palestinian security forces, loyal to the Hamas movement, surrounded the mosque and demanded the gunmen of the Salafi group to surrender.

The group accused Hamas of deserting Islam and of being a secular group that does not ‘apply the rulings of God”.

Hamas said that the gunmen who barricaded themselves in the mosque asked for Mohammad Al Shimaly, a Qassam fighter in order to mediate between them and the security forces, but once Al Shimaly arrived, one of the gunmen fired an RPG shell and killed him.

Hamas security sources reported that the security men chased several gunmen of the new group and surrounded buildings they barricading themselves in. Several members of the Salafi group were arrested while others were injured.

A spokesperson of the Interior Ministry said that five Palestinian policemen were killed by the gunmen, and added that the security forces managed to control the area where the gunmen barricaded themselves.

The spokesperson added that the explosion that took place on Friday in the house of Sheikh Abdul-Latif Abu Mousa, Secretary-general of the Salafi and Jihad group, was internal and that Hamas’s security forces had nothing to do with it.

13 killed in Gaza clashes

Sat, 15 Aug 2009 02:33:00

Palestinian medical sources reported on Friday at night that 13 Palestinians, including a senior leader of the Al Qassam brigades, were killed in clashes with fundamental Salafi gunmen who barricaded themselves at a mosque in Rafah. 100 Palestinians were injured, some seriously.

Security sources in Gaza reported that some of the killed Palestinians are members of the security forces of Hamas, and others were civilians.

The Qatar-based Al Jazeera reportd that an Egyptian child in the the Egyptian border city of Rafah was shot and wounded by a stray bullet.

The Interior Ministry demanded the gunmen to surrender, while its security forces detonated the house of Sheikh Abdul-Latif Abu Mousa, head of the Salafi and Jihad group in Gaza.

At a Friday night press conference in Gaza Taher Al Nunu, spokesperson of the government in Gaza, said that the groups is for recent bombings that targeted weddings and Internet Cafés.

He added that the Friday clashes took place after a group under Abu Mousa declared an ‘emirate’ that believes that the Muslims in Gaza are atheists, and should follow the Salafi tradition.

Al Nunu further said that the security forces in Gaza will uphold the law and enforce order.

Six Palestinians killed, dozens injured in clashes between Hamas fighters and Salafi gunmen

Fri, 14 Aug 2009 23:14:53

Palestinian sources in the Gaza Strip reported that six Palestinians were killed in clashes that took place between security forces, loyal to Hamas, and gunmen of a Salafi fundamental group after they barricaded themselves in a mosque in Rafah, in the southern part of the Gaza Strip, forty Palestinians were injured.

The sources added that security forces members detonated the house of Sheikh Abdul-Latif Abu Mousa, Secretary-general of the Salafi and Jihad group in Gaza.

Hamas security forces also attacked the gunmen who barricaded in the mosque, and casualties were reported in the ensuing clashes.

The incident took place after the Imam of a local mosque in Rafah declared ‘the birth of the Islamic Emirate”.

‘We will establish this emirate, on our bodies, we will implement the Islamic Sharia and ruling”, Abu Mousa said, “We will set the limits, we will implement the rulings of God”.

He said that the Hamas government is trying to make the mosque of Sheikh Al Islam Ibin Tamima part of the Islamic Waqf and Endowment Ministry, and added that “this will never happen”.

He also called on the Hamas-led government in Gaza ‘either to implement the ruling of God, or become a secular party under the umbrella of Islam”.

“Should Hamas implement the ruling of God, we the Salafists will we serve its government”, Abu Mousa added.

The Ministry of Interior in Gaza said that ‘it seems that Mousa is suffering from a touch of madness”, and added that any person who bears arms to spread chaos will be arrested.

Ismail Haniyya, Prime Minister of the dissolved Hamas government in Gaza, stated earlier on Friday that there are no non-Palestinian fighters in the Gaza Strip, and accused Israel of spreading rumors that gunmen who fought the U.S. forces in Iraq and Afghanistan have infiltrated into Gaza.

The new Salafi group had announced its existence in the Gaza Strip two months ago. Israel believes that three of its fighters were killed in an attempted raid targeting an Israeli military base near the Gaza border. The fighters, who carried the attempted attack, were riding horses.

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