Fatah Storms Hamas-led Palestinian Parliament
Hamas is celebrating in Gaza- Fatah reacts in the West Bank.
Palestinian Hamas supporters carry a portrait of sacked Palestinian prime minister Ismail Haniya(C) as they attend a celebration rally in Gaza City. Hamas fighters cemented their bloody capture of the Gaza Strip on Friday, creating an Islamic enclave on Israel’s doorstep and further dashing prospects for peace and Palestinian statehood.(AFP/Mahmud Hams)
Meanwhile… The BBC is reporting on the latest violence from the Palestinian territories:
Fatah gunmen have stormed the Hamas-controlled Palestinian parliament building in Ramallah in the West Bank. The gunmen reportedly tried to seize the Palestinian Legislative Council’s second deputy speaker, Hassan Khuraishah, but staff intervened.
Mr Khuraishah told the BBC he had been beaten up as he tried to prevent Fatah gunmen from raising their flag.
The clashes came after Fatah was ousted from Gaza by Hamas, ending a week of clashes which left more than 100 dead.
In a show of strength, supporters of Mr Abbas’s Fatah movement paraded around Ramallah and fired weapons into the air.
They chanted “Hamas out” outside the parliament and climbed onto the building’s roof to plant Fatah and Palestinian flags.
Later, they scuffled with officials after forcing their way into the office of one of the PLC’s two deputy speakers and accusing him of being a Hamas supporter.
Other Fatah supporters ransacked the ministry of education, led by Hamas member Nasser Shair, although no-one was harmed in the attack.
Almost all Hamas politicians and prominent supporters in Ramallah have either fled or gone into hiding.
Fatah supporters also took over the Hamas-controlled legislative council in Nablus.
Gaza was reported to be relatively calm on Saturday, compared with recent days.
Hamas said the bodies of seven of its supporters had been found in a compound in Gaza City which had been used by pro-Fatah security forces.
A Palestinian boy holds a poster of the late president Yasser Arafat, leader of the Fatah movement, during a protest being held by Fatah party supporters at the Dheisheh refugee camp near the West Bank city of Bethlehem. Hamas fighters cemented their bloody capture of the Gaza Strip on Friday, creating an Islamic enclave on Israel’s doorstep and further dashing prospects for peace and Palestinian statehood.(AFP/Musa al-Shaer)