Terrorists killing each other at Hamas HQ aka Shifa hospital
December 21, 2006
: Khaled Abu Toameh
JERUSALEM – Six Palestinians were killed and dozens injured as the cease-fire between Hamas and Fatah in the Gaza Strip collapsed Tuesday, less than 48 hours after it went into effect.
Another cease-fire agreement was announced late Tuesday, this time under the auspices of Egyptian mediators. According to the new deal, Hamas and Fatah agreed to withdraw all their gunmen from the streets and to release all those who were kidnapped from both sides.
The new cease-fire was to take effect at 11 p.m. Tuesday. Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas called off a planned visit to the Gaza Strip because of the renewed clashes, his aides said. Both Abbas and Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh of Hamas called on the warring parties to halt the fighting immediately.
Tuesday's clashes began when members of the PA General Intelligence Force fired at gunmen belonging to Hamas's "Executive Force" at the Shifa Hospital in Gaza City. Eyewitnesses said members of the "Executive Force" stationed at the hospital tried to prevent an ambulance from entering the compound under the pretext that gunmen were hiding inside the vehicle.
Sources close to the General Intelligence Force claimed the ambulance was carrying an officer who broke his leg when he fell off a ladder.
"The Hamas guards at the hospital kidnapped the officer and his companions and held them as hostages inside the hospital," they said. "Then the Hamas militiamen phoned the General Intelligence headquarters and asked us to send a force to take the kidnapped men."
According to the sources, when General Intelligence officers arrived at the hospital, the Hamas guards opened fire, injuring three of them. They also claimed that a fourth officer, Muhammed al-Harazin, was kidnapped by the Hamas gunmen. Harazin's body was later discovered near the hospital together with the bullet-riddled body of another General Intelligence officer, Muhammed Kassab.