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Hamas: PA arrested over 800 members in 2011

Jan. 15, 2012 2:37 P.M. (Updated: Jan. 16, 2012 8:38 P.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) -- Hamas said Sunday that Palestinian Authority security services in the West Bank had detained 805 members from the Islamic movement in 2011.

A report by the party said that 350 people detained by the PA were prisoners freed from Israeli jails and eight were journalists.

The highest detention rate was in the Nablus region, the report said, where 310 Hamas members were arrested in 2011. Sixty-seven members from the movement were tried in court, the report stated.

It added that the PA had discriminated against Hamas employees, firing 21 in 2011. The PA also sent back four Israelis who had entered the West Bank by mistake, it said.

In July, Hamas said that hundreds of supporters of the party and leaders had been summoned by Palestinian Authority forces and 68 members had been arrested.

Senior Hamas leader Khalil Al-Hayyah had told reporters Saturday that Hamas and Fatah had overcome a misunderstanding the week before which saw Fatah officials denied entry to the Gaza Strip, a charge which Hamas denied.

Despite leaders continuing to trade accusations, other party officials from both Hamas and Fatah reported progress in implementing the terms of the May reconciliation deal after a meeting Saturday.
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