A Palestinian Authority cabinet minister in Ramallah on Wednesday issued a fatwa (Islamic religious decree) obliging Palestinians to revolt against Hamas and end its control over the Gaza Strip.

The fatwa, issued by PA Minister for Wakf Affairs Mahmoud Habbash, is yet another sign of mounting tensions between Fatah and Hamas in the wake of the crisis in Egypt.

Fatah, the ruling faction of the PA, supports the ouster of president Mohamed Morsi, while Hamas has condemned it as a military coup against a legitimate and democratically elected leader.

Writing on his Facebook account, Habbash said in his fatwa that it was the duty of Muslims to end Hamas’s control over the Gaza Strip.

Habbash said that there were two ways of achieving this goal: either by achieving reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas, or by revolting against the Islamist movement in the Gaza Strip.

It was the duty of Muslims “to liberate Palestine and Jerusalem. This duty can’t be fulfilled without achieving unity. Hence, it is a duty to unite,” the PA minister explained in his fatwa.

“But unity can’t be achieved without ending the split [between Hamas and Fatah]. Hence it is a duty to end the split. But ending the split can’t be achieved without ending Hamas’s control over the Gaza Strip. Hence, it is a duty to end the Hamas control over the Gaza Strip.

“Ending the Hamas control over the Gaza Strip can be done only in two ways: reconciliation or a revolution against Hamas. Therefore, one of these options is a duty,” he wrote.

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