Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) Tuesday lashes out at West Bank-based Palestinian courts that sentenced its members to imprisonment.
The denouncement came after 18 members from Hamas and Islamic Jihad (Holy War) movements were sentenced to three to five years imprisonment by Palestinian-ruled courts in the West Bank.
"The courts aim at ending armed resistance against the occupation," Hamas said in a statement sent to reporters, adding that they "are dangerous and almost like the Israeli (military)courts in threatening the social textile of the Palestinian society."
The movement said security forces of President Mahmoud Abbas had detained dozens of its activists and members in the West Bank. But Palestinian security officials said those detained Hamas members had been involved in building up an executive security force similar to the one established in the Gaza Strip.
"Neither Abbas nor anybody else will be able to take away the legitimacy of the Hamas movement because it has legitimacy from its leaders, martyrs, the resistance and the voters," the statement said.
The Palestinian security services launched a detention campaign against Hamas members and supporters in the West Bank in mid-June right after Hamas took control of the Gaza Strip and seized pro-Fatah and the Palestinian National Authority facilities in the coastal enclave.
Abbas dismissed the Hamas-led government and formed a new government led by Salam Fayyad in the West Bank following Hamas' takeover of Gaza.
Last Mod: 07 Ağustos 2007, 17:07