Hamas on Wednesday criticized Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas for publicly declaring his willingness to aid Israel in the search for three kidnapped teens in the West Bank.
During an appearance at the Organization of Islamic Conference foreign minister's meeting, Abbas said that security coordination with Israel would continue, and that Ramallah would cooperate in helping to find the three boys.
Hamas reacted on Wednesday by saying that those remarks "are unacceptable and are damaging to the Palestinian interest." The Islamist organization did not comment on Abbas' call on the abductors to free the teens and permit them to return home to their families.
"The president's statements regarding security coordination [with Israel] are in contravention to the Cairo agreement and they are harmful to the national interest," a Hamas spokesperson in Gaza said. "They are an affront to the thousands of Palestinian prisoners who are facing death in the jails of the occupation."
While the spokesperson, Sami Abu Zuhri, did not specifically address the kidnappers, he said that "our compatriots are allowed to defend themselves and to respond to the crimes of the occupation by any possible means."
Abbas' remarks, he said, "are based solely on Israeli claims that are without any factual basis."