Hamas intensifies measures against Palestinians collaborating with Israel: official
A Hamas official said Saturday that the movement had intensified security measures against Palestinians who were collaborating with Israel, Xinhua reported.
Hamas Interior Minister Fathi Hammad said in an interview with Hamas satellite television Al-Aqsa TV that his ministry "keeps the door open for the collaborators to repent," adding after the two- month ultimatum which ends on July 10, "there will be no mercy."
Meanwhile, Hamas Interior Ministry said in a press statement that police stations and other security authorities "will be open round the clock for anybody who wants to repent."
According to the official, the decision to give collaborators a chance "is part of the national movement to confront collaboration with the enemy, and protect the Palestinian society from elimination and from future Israeli assaults."
"Security activities against collaborators are ongoing and will never stop. Anybody who doesn't repent before July 10 will face the harshest legal and judiciary punishment," said Hammad.
He added that his ministry would carry out "unmerciful and furious war against the collaborators who provide Israel with information about the Palestinian resistance and their locations."
On April 15, the deposed government of Hamas executed two Palestinians who were convicted of being collaborators with Israel. Hamas execution, which outraged the local rights groups, was the first of its kind since the movement seized control of the enclave in June 2007.
The Palestinian National Authority (PNA) had also opposed Hamas execution of the two Palestinians, saying according to the Palestinian law, Hamas should get the approval of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. However, Hamas doesn't recognize Abbas as the president.
Palestinian observers said the Israeli army can successfully carry out any military action against Palestinian militants, who plan armed attacks from the Gaza Strip against Israel, without the data collected by the Palestinian collaborators.
Hamas says Israel is continuously working on recruiting Gaza young men to be its collaborators, adding Israel is making use of the deteriorated economic situation in the Gaza Strip.
Abu Abdallah, chief of Hamas interior security, told Al-Aqsa that collaborators contact Israel mainly through cell phones, telephones, the Internet, or through meeting with foreign people in the Gaza Strip or abroad.
"Communication between Israel and the collaborators can also take place during the daily Israeli incursions into the Gaza Strip, or through advertisements published on the Internet. Israel attracts the poor by giving them millions of dollars," said Abu Abdallah.
Through local radio stations, Hamas has been asking the collaborators and those who are thinking to become collaborators with Israel "to think deeply and repent."
"Several collaborators had positively responded to the government's call. They surrendered themselves to police stations and were then transferred to interior security department for questioning," spokesman of Hamas Interior Ministry Ihab al- Ghussein told Xinhua.
However, he refused to reveal the names of the collaborators and those who surrendered, stressing his ministry's campaign against collaborating with Israel has made progress.
"The security authorities were shocked when some collaborators surrendered, whom no one would suspect," said al-Ghussein.