Friday, August 27, 2004

Palestinians call for kidnapping soldiers

Frustrated by the failure of the hunger strike by Palestinian prisoners to attract worldwide attention, the armed wings of Fatah and Islamic Jihad on Thursday called for kidnapping IDF soldiers and settlers to boost the prisoners' campaign.

The threat was included in a joint statement issued in the Gaza Strip by the Aqsa Martyrs Brigades of Fatah and Al Quds Battalions of the Islamic Jihad.

Masked gunmen from the two groups read out the statement to journalists in Gaza City. They said their men have been instructed to kidnap IDF soldiers and settlers in order to use them as a bargaining chip with Israel.

The gunmen also criticized the 'apathy' in the Arab world towards the hunger strike, which entered its 12th day on Thursday.

The statement revealed that a joint Fatah-Islamic Jihad had tried to kidnap a soldier three months ago, but failed because of tough security measures."