3 Hamas policemen hurt in Gaza blast

Hamas blames Fatah for the attack; comes after Islamist group takes control of rival's office building.

October 4, 2007 07:07
hamas arrest fatah 224 ap

hamas arrest fatah 224 a. (photo credit: AP)

An explosion went off early Thursday near a group of Hamas policemen patrolling in Gaza City, wounding three, including one critically, Hamas officials said. Hamas blamed the rival Fatah movement for the attack, and said it has rounded up several suspects. The explosion came at a time of rising tensions between the bitter rivals. Also Thursday, a Fatah activist was wounded in an exchange of fire with Hamas gunmen in a refugee camp in southern Lebanon, Israel Radio reported. On Wednesday, Hamas police took control of a four-story Fatah office building, a Fatah spokesman said. Fatah activists were ordered to leave the building without their belongings, said Fatah spokesman Hazem Abu Shanab. Since taking control of Gaza by force in June, Hamas has closed down most Fatah institutions in Gaza. Wednesday's raid came a day after four people were killed in what Hamas said was an attempt to carry out an attack on a Hamas security compound in Gaza City. Three of those killed were members of Fatah. Hamas said the assailants were killed when explosives they were handling exploded prematurely. Fatah activists said Hamas had attacked the group with rocket propelled grenades.

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