Hamas grills Gaza parliament official

July 10, 2007 13:41

Abu Safiya questioned for changing weekend to Fri.-Sat. instead of Thurs.-Fri.

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Some two-dozen Hamas gunmen took the director general of the Palestinian parliament from his home in Gaza and questioned him for five hours on Tuesday. The official, Izzedine Abu Safiya, said he was questioned because he had followed Abbas's directive for observing a new weekend - Friday and Saturday, rather than the traditional Thursday and Friday. Abbas and Hamas are locked in a battle of control over thousands of government employees in Gaza. Abbas has said only those who refused to cooperate with Hamas would receive their salaries, and officials estimated that about 31,000, including many hired by Hamas, were not getting paid. The change in the weekend, introduced to make the Palestinian workweek more compatible with an international schedule, has also become part of the power struggle. In a related development, Hamas gunmen searched the home of Moussa Wazir, the deputy finance minister loyal to Fatah, and took documents from his house, according to his daughter, Sanaa. Hamas officials were not available for comment.

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