JAFFA, Israel – Gaza Islamists held a press conference on Saturday urging members of the Palestinian Authority security forces to follow in the footsteps of a Palestinian policeman who carried out a shooting attack against Israeli soldiers in the West Bank earlier that day.
They called on West Bank troops to “join the intifada” and “turn their weapons against the soldiers of the enemy.”
Islamic Jihad spokesperson Daoud Shihab said that the attack, which injured three – including two seriously – was a “heroic action that marks a watershed in the ‘Al Quds’ intifada that opened the door to a flow of similar attacks. On behalf of all the organizations, I call on the security troops to follow the example of the martyr Amjad Sukari and attack the Israeli occupation.”
Wishing to avoid calling on Palestinian Authority officials to take up arms, Fatah did not take part in the press conference. The movement accused Hamas of promoting unrest in the West Bank in a bid to drive a wedge between the PA and the population while preventing rocket fire from Gaza, fearing an Israeli retaliation.
The press conference was preceded by a memorial vigil for the terrorist, Amjad a-Sukari, 34, from Jamma’in. He was part of the Palestinian security forces and worked as the driver for Palestinian Attorney General Ahmad Hanoun in Ramallah.
“We admire the martyr’s heroic act,” said Hamas spokesperson Ismail Radwan. “Every Palestinian must take part in the intifada,” he said in a bid to send the Palestinian Authority a message.
“The troops should use their weapons to avenge the cold-blooded death of our children,” he said. “Rise up for the sake of your nation, don’t obey calls that seek to undermine the Palestinian cause. Stand by your people before it’s too late. We’re certain that those who collaborate with the occupation will not be able to stop the intifada.”
Also on Saturday, Hamas militants marched in honor of Sukari, raising banners carrying his picture and saluting him.