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Haniyeh: Bomb plot targeted election HQ

June 8, 2012 3:18 P.M. (Updated: June 12, 2012 12:50 P.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Security forces in the Gaza Strip detained someone suspected of planting a bomb near the Central Elections Committee which recently reopened, a top official said.

Premier Ismail Haniyeh said the "committee was threatened that if they ever arrive in Gaza they would be harmed. So we gave our directions for the security agency to search for the person who sent the threat."

"We provide full protection of the committee members while they are in Gaza," he added, speaking during Friday prayers at a mosque.

He said the Ministry of the Interior was able to detain the suspect, who he did not identify but said he was not affiliated to Hamas or any other faction and was working for someone in Ramallah.

The suspect allegedly planted an explosive device inside the home of an independent figure located opposite the elections headquarters and set it to explode as commission staff arrived.

“When we accepted the elections commission, it was a commitment to accomplish reconciliation,” Haniyeh said, adding that Hamas made many concessions in the spirit of restoring unity.

Haniyeh added that reconciliation requires freedom of will and political decision. He added that there were still detentions of Hamas leaders in the West Bank, indicating that not everyone supported restoring unity in the occupied territories.

Haniyeh met the CEC chief Hanna Nasser in Gaza City on May 28 and gave the commission permission to start work updating the electoral role in preparation for a vote.

Hamas' agreement to let the CEC work in Gaza was a condition set by Fatah leader and President Mahmoud Abbas for starting consultations on forming a unity government.
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