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Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Gunbattles, kidnappings, rocket fire in Gaza. The usual.

PCHR reports that there was a gunbattle in the Jabalya camp in Gaza yesterday, in which hand grenades were used. One was injured.

Also yesterday, there was the usual kidnapping and beating of a man in Gaza:
At approximately 21:30 on Sunday, 14 March 2010, Salah al-Masri, an n employee in the Palestinian National Authority, was in a shop near his house in al-‘Oyoun Street in al-Nasser neighborhood in the north of Gaza city. In the meanwhile, a Golf car stopped, an three masked gunmen stepped down from it. At gunpoint, the gunmen forced al-Masri to get into the car. They blindfolded him with his sweater and drove him to an unknown destination. Al-Masri told PCHR that the gunmen took him into a building in an area that he does not know and questioned him about his relationship with the government in Ramallah. They tied his hands behind his back and forced him sit in a painful position, known as "Shabeh."They then violently beat him. They questioned him for several hours. During questioning, the beat him with an iron chain on his head and they tortured him with electrical shocks to his feet. At midnight, they drove him to the currency market in the east of Gaza city. They left him there and drove away.

During the last three weeks, PCHR documented two similar attacks in Rafah and in Deir al-Balah town in the southern and central Gaza Strip respectively. In Rafah, Hammad Mohammed Abu Jazar, 42, was kidnapped and tortured by masked gunmen. According to Abu Jazar, on Saturday evening, 13 March 2010, a Hyundai car intercepted him while on his way to his house in al-Brazil neighborhood in Rafah. Two gunmen in civil clothes stepped down from the car and forced Abu Jazar to get into the car at gunpoint. They drove him to an unknown destination. Abu Jazar stated that the gunmen who were in the car beat him with their hands and gun butts throughout his body. They accused him of insulting Mohammed Shamali, a member of the Izziddin al-Qassam Brigades (the armed wing of Hamas, who was killed on 14 August 2009 in armed clashes that took place in the vicinity of Ibn Taymeya Mosque. Fifteen minutes later, the gunmen dumped him near the border area. Abu Jazar then called one of his friends who came and transferred him to the hospital for medical treatment.

On 02 March, Yousef Fu'ad al-Ma’ni, 21, from Deir al-Balah, was kidnapped and tortured by unknown gunmen. According to statements given by al-Ma’ni to PCHR, he was tortured by unknown persons who pressured him to sign and fingerprint documents that he does not know what they were for. They then drove him to an unknown destination, hit him on his head with a sharp tool and dumped him in the street.
PCHR is loathe to accuse Hamas outright of these kidnappings, of course, but most of them indeed seem to be done by Hamas security forces.

You know, those freedom fighters that people like George Galloway love so much. I don't know about the freedom part, but they sure love to fight!

Also, a Qassam rocket exploded immediately after launch near Beit Lahiya today.