EXCLUSIVE – Hamas, Fatah Disputes May Threaten Israel, Egypt Border Security, Source Says

Disputes between Hamas and Fatah on issues that lie at the heart of Palestinian reconciliation may turn into a security nightmare for Israel and Egypt, an Arab security source told Breitbart Jerusalem.

According to the source, Hamas has officially handed the Palestinian Authority responsibility for security matters in Gaza but there hasn’t been any organized process to inform Palestinian Authority officials of potential dangers or gaps in border areas, especially along the border with Egypt.

“Hamas is angry at Abbas for not removing the sanctions he placed on the Gaza Strip, so they’re taking their time with a professional, organized relinquishing of the border crossings.

“As far as they’re concerned the Palestinian Authority can take full responsibility but PA officials still don’t have all the information required to understand the complicated nature of the situation at the border in addition to being technically unprepared to take responsibility for the border crossings.”

According to the source, this is the reason Egypt has delayed opening the Rafah border crossing.

The source also said that one of the implications of this could be that jihadists in the area will feel much more comfortable crossing the border and even committing attacks at the Rafah crossing and the area of the border crossing between Egypt and Israel.

“This will be a huge danger if there isn’t an organized transfer of security responsibility at the border crossings,” said the source. “But because of the internal disputes between Hamas and Abbas, Hamas is slowing down the communication of security issues to the Palestinian Authority. But the PA, especially those around Abbas, is treating the security package as being bigger than just the border crossings but also including the existence in Gaza of armed groups, first and foremost Hamas’ military wing and their weapons.

“The overlooking of the border crossings issue and transferring it carelessly to the Palestinian Authority is an attempt by Hamas to pressure the PA to give up the discussion over the weapons controlled by Hamas.”

Meanwhile, Arab and Palestinian media reported Thursday that a senior security delegation from the Palestinian Authority is expected to arrive in Gaza to formulate a situational analysis of the security situation in the Gaza Strip and the border crossings. The planned visit comes just ahead of a trip to Cairo by representatives of the Palestinian organizations in order to discuss the Palestinian reconciliation deal.

The delegation is composed of members of the PA security forces in the West Bank. Among other things, the committee is expected to discuss integrating Hamas security personnel into the Palestinian Authority security forces that will be active in Gaza. One newspaper noted that thousands of Hamas security personnel are active in the Gaza Strip and some are expected to be integrated into the new security forces in the enclave.


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