Palestinian resistance factions delivering a joint statement (Photo credit: www.longwarjournal.org)
Senior Fatah officials affiliated with the Palestinian Authority (PA) have expressed their dissatisfaction with the growing influence of Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) in the West Bank.
In an interview with Israeli media on 13 August, senior Fatah official Jamal Tirawi accused Hamas and PIJ of taking advantage of the infighting within the ranks of the PA to infringe it.
“The Fatah leadership has created a vacuum, and other Palestinian groups are moving to fill it by recruiting young men,” Tirawi told Israeli news website Jerusalem Post.
Tirawi reasons that the loss of confidence in the PA is due to its collusion with the Israeli army and Shin Bet in the face of Israel’s continuous crimes against the Palestinian people.
This situation, coupled with the “authority’s poor performance in all fields and the absence of a fair judicial system” has embarrassed Fatah’s leadership.
“In the eyes of many Palestinians, the PA’s role has been limited to issuing traffic tickets, carrying out some arrests [of dissidents], and collecting taxes,” Tirawi added.
Palestinans hold a vigil at Manara Square in Ramallah demanding the release of the political detainees in Palestinan Authority (PA) prisons. pic.twitter.com/gEWBXT4yAm
— Quds News Network (@QudsNen) August 13, 2022
Over recent weeks, Palestinians have ramped up retaliatory attacks against Israeli forces and settlers, carrying out a series of operations that have left at least 11 Israelis dead as of late April.
However, what sets Hazem’s operation apart is his family’s political affiliation and background.
Raad’s father, Fathi Hazem, is a retired colonel of the National Security Forces, which is affiliated with the Fatah-led PA in the West Bank.
Additionally, Ibrahim al-Nabulsi, one of Tel Aviv’s most wanted men in the occupied West Bank, comes from a political background similar to Hazem’s.
Al-Nabulsi was assassinated on 9 August for leading Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, a coalition of armed groups associated with the PA.
Nevertheless, a few hours after his death, Hamas released a voice message on its official media platform sent by Al-Nabulsi to its leadership, saluting and thanking them for their support.
Al-Nabulsi appeared in a video reciting his final will, the flag of the PIJ seen behind him.
Alaa Izzat al-Nablusi, Ibrahim’s father, is a colonel in the ranks of the Palestinian Authority’s Preventive Security Service.
For its part, the PA attempted to downplay the recent trend, claiming that such rare cases do not represent the PA or its security services, despite both of the fathers’ outspoken support of their sons’ operations.
“We have tens of thousands of people serving in our security forces, and the recent cases are extremely rare and unrepresentative. You can’t hold parents responsible for what their grown-up sons do,” an unnamed PA official told Jerusalem Post.