Bethlehem – Ma’an – Hamas officials called the six Palestinian deaths at the hands of Israeli forces Saturday part of the policy of "hunting down resistance groups" and vehemently condemned the two attacks.
The targeted extrajudicial executions of three Fatah-affiliated former fighters in the West Bank city of Nablus were coupled with a deadly airstrike on what Israel claimed were Palestinians attempting to infiltrate the country. The attack killed three and injured a fourth.
Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri called the assassinations a "war crime" since all three Fatah members were shot at close range in or beside their homes after they had been detained by Israeli forces. The official speculated that the Palestinian Authority was involved in supporting the assassinations, and suggested that "resistance should be enhanced, not plotted against."
Senior Hamas leader Ismail Radwan also denounced the killings. He told reporters, "This crime was a continuation of occupation’s crimes, and it proves that the Israeli mentality recognizes only murder and bloodshed."
Radwan also noted that "the crime coincides with the first anniversary of the Israeli war against the Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip. It confirms that the enemy believes only in murder and terrorism."