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Thursday, December 30, 2010

Al Aqsa Brigades declares a truce with Israel?

Palestine News Network reports that the Al Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades in Gaza - the military wing of Fatah - has declared a truce with Israel.

The leader of the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades Mekdad Ehab said on Wednesday that the declaration of a truce with the occupation comes unilaterally to ensure the national interest, and in order to avoid giving pretexts for the occupation to wage a new war on the sector [Gaza.]

Other groups were in the meeting as well.

Mahmoud Khalaf, a member of the Central Committee of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine, said that the meeting was intended to close ranks and confront the Israeli threats, adding that the factions had agreed to many of the most important issues to emphasize that the resistance is a natural right to defend the Palestinian people

The meeting was organized by Hamas. Hamas has been keeping all other terror organizations mostly in line, and the recent increase in rockets and Israeli reactions seem to have spooked the group.

This is mostly cosmetic. The Al Aqsa Brigades are close to non-existent in Gaza ever since Hamas took over.  They've shot a few token rockets but if any member shows allegiance to Fatah in Ramallah, Hamas is there to perform some gentle physical persuasion.

It does show that Hamas, for all its rhetoric, is not looking for a war now, and that can only be a good thing.