Hamas women in West Bank march

Police block protest calling for release of jailed Hamas members.

    Palestinian women called for the release of jailed
    Hamas members  [AFP]

    "We are one Palestinian people in Gaza and the West Bank ... Abbas is helping the Israelis by jailing his own people."

    Western backing

    The protest came amid simmering tensions between the two Palestinian factions after Hamas defeated Fatah-led forces in the Gaza Strip in June, prompting Abbas to sack a Hamas-led government.

    Abbas has since established a new administration in the West Bank headed by prime minister Salam Fayyad, which has the backing of Western governments.

    Mona Munsoor, a Hamas politician, said about 150 Hamas supporters had been jailed by Fatah-aligned forces in the West Bank for political reasons.

    "The conditions are very harsh and they have been beaten," Munsoor told Reuters news agency.

    "We, the mothers, want to show the world what Fatah is doing to us."

    Saturday's protest was the first by Hamas supporters in Ramallah since the fighting in Gaza in June.
     
    Tensions between the factions have been particularly high in Gaza in recent weeks after Hamas security men beat Fatah supporters during protests and Hamas blamed mysterious explosions on Fatah loyalists.

    Sami Abu Zuhri, a Hamas spokesman told the AFP news agency: "The attacks by the Palestinian Authority security services against a peaceful demonstration organised by mothers and wives shows the repression being carried out by the Ramallah regime against Hamas in the West Bank, even against its women."

    Hamas said that security forces loyal to Abbas had detained a further six of its members in the northern West Bank in the previous 24 hours, including two municipal councillors in the city of Nablus.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Lost childhoods: Nigeria's fear of 'witchcraft' ruins young lives

    Lost childhoods: Nigeria's fear of 'witchcraft' ruins young lives

    Many Pentecostal churches in the Niger Delta offer to deliver people from witchcraft and possession - albeit for a fee.

    The priceless racism of the Duke of Edinburgh

    The priceless racism of the Duke of Edinburgh

    Prince Philip has done the world an extraordinary service by exposing the racist hypocrisy of "Western civilisation".

    Why a hipster, vegan, green tech economy is not sustainable

    Why a hipster, vegan, green tech economy is not sustainable

    Improving eco-efficiency within a capitalist growth-oriented system will not save the environment.