Hamas official to Fatah: Stop security agencies ahead of Sunday meeting

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    GAZA, (PIC)-- Ismail al-Ashqar, who represents Hamas on the Palestinian Legislative Council, has called on Fatah to pressure the security agencies into ending their persecution of elements from Hamas in the West Bank as the two parties gear for a long awaited reconciliation talks in Cairo.

    ‘’It’s clear that there is a stream within the Fatah movement that has been harmed by reconciliation, and that this stream is uninterested in following through with reconciliation,’’ Ashqar said in comments ahead of the meeting due for Sunday.

    ‘’That is why whenever calls coincide with applying the reconciliation issue, the security services in the West Bank launch a campaign of wide-scale arrests against the people and supporters of Hamas in the West Bank, as happened last night in Al-Khalil,’’ he said.

    Dozens of Hamas supporters in Al-Khalil reported receiving summonses on Thursday and Friday. Some eight civilians have recently been taken in the arrest sweep.

    Meanwhile, the Switzerland-based Rights for All organization has recently condemned the practices of the West Bank security agencies, with focus on the restrictions made on press freedoms.

    This came after reporter Magdalene Hassouna has been summoned to be interviewed by the security forces over stories she covered in the West Bank.

    Rights for All chairman Anwar Gharbi said in a statement that the repeated summonses were aimed at silencing her and ‘’limiting her personal freedoms’’ as the orders came just days after Hassouna covered a sit-in against political imprisonment in Nablus.

    Nablus security forces arrested two of the reporter’s brothers after she publicly declared on her Facebook page her refusal to respond to the repeated summonses.

    Gharbi further threatened to ask the UN Human Rights Council to take ‘’significant measures’’ against the Palestinian Authority should Hassouna continue to be harassed.

    Hamas official to Fatah: Stop security agencies ahead of Sunday meeting
     
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    RAMALLAH, (PIC)-- The number of Palestinian citizens who joined the youth campaign against summonses issued arbitrarily by the Palestinian authority security apparatuses in the West Bank has risen since the signing of the national reconciliation agreement between Hamas and Fatah factions.

    A Palestinian youth campaign active in the West Bank documented about 100 cases in which Palestinian citizens refused to comply with wanton summonses issued against them to go to headquarters of security apparatuses for interrogation.

    One of the activists in this campaign told Quds Press on condition of anonymity that since Hamas and Fatah signed a reconciliation agreement in Cairo, the PA security apparatuses have escalated the summonses significantly against West Bank citizens.

    He noted that many cases of summonses were posted on a facebook page established by Palestinian young men.

    He also pointed out that in some cases, the PA security apparatuses used pressures against those who rejected the summonses, where they kidnapped brothers of journalist Majdoleen Hassouna and physically assaulted young men and their families because of their refusal.

    In a related incident, the PA preventive security forces summoned on Wednesday many citizens who participated in a reception ceremony held in Tubas city to celebrate the release of prisoner Ashraf Daraghmeh from an Israeli jail.

    Eyewitnesses told the Palestinian information center (PIC) that the campaign of summonses is still ongoing in the city and all citizens are interrogated about who printed the photos of prisoner Daraghmeh and who organized the reception in addition to many other questions related to the reception.

    Number of West Bankers who refuse to comply with summonses on the rise
     

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