hamas gunmen 224 88 ap.
(photo credit: AP [file])
Hamas on Monday accused the Palestinian Authority security forces of torturing one of its supporters to death in a detention center in the West Bank.
The victim was identified as Fadi Hosni Hamadeh, 28, of the village of Assireh Shamaliyeh near Nablus.
He was arrested last June by the PA's General Intelligence Service on suspicion of membership in Hamas.
Hamadeh's body was discovered early Monday in his cell at the PA-run Jnaid prison near Nablus.
PA security officers claimed that an initial investigation showed that Hamadeh had committed suicide.
But the man's older brother, Muhammad, strongly denied the claim, saying that Hamadeh could never have considered committing suicide because he was religious.
Hamas also dismissed the claim, saying Hamadeh, like most Hamas-affiliated detainees, had died as a result of brutal torture.
Hamas legislator Salah Bardaweel said that "every Palestinian child has by now heard of the various torture methods used by the Palestinian security forces."
He said that Hamas would never forgive those responsible for the death of Hamadeh and other detainees held by security forces loyal to PA President Mahmoud Abbas.
Hamadeh is the second detainee to die in a PA prison since the beginning of the month. On August 4, a top Hamas operative, Kamal Abu Toyamah, died in a Jordan hospital shortly after being released from a PA detention center in the West Bank.
Abu Toyamah was arrested by PA security forces in September 2008, but was released two months ago after a serious deterioration in his health.
His family and Hamas also accused the PA security forces of torturing him while he was in detention.
At least six Palestinians have died in PA detention centers in the past two years. Hamas and human rights organizations estimate that up to 1,000 Palestinians are being held without trial by Abbas's security forces on suspicion of membership in Hamas.