IHH lauds new Hamas terror group

Turkish group made congratulatory video in honor of Al-Ahrar.

Mavi Marmara 311 (photo credit: Associated Press)
Mavi Marmara 311
(photo credit: Associated Press)
In another sign of the ties between the Turkish organization IHH and Hamas, a representative of the group that organized the aid flotilla blocked by the Israel Navy on May 31 made a congratulatory video address at a recent ceremony marking the establishment of a new terrorist group in the Gaza Strip.
The ceremony was held in mid-July in Gaza and marked the establishment of a military wing by the Palestinian movement Al-Ahrar – The Free – which broke off from Fatah following Hamas’s takeover of the Gaza Strip in June 2007. The new military wing’s name is Al-Ansar Battalions.
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IHH, according to Israel, is a radical Islamic organization which supports Hamas activity.
It was behind the flotilla to the Gaza Strip in late May that was stopped by the navy. During the boarding of the Mavi Marmara passenger ship, navy commandos were attacked by a group of mercenaries armed with knives, metal bars and bats, and killed nine Turkish nationals in the ensuing clashes.
Al-Ahrar is closely aligned with Hamas and espouses armed struggle as the way to end the so-called Israeli occupation of the West Bank. The ceremony last month – a military ceremony which was attended by several dozen armed operatives carrying Kalashnikov rifles – was also attended by top Hamas administration officials in the Gaza Strip, including Interior Minister Fathi Hamad and Legislative Council Deputy Speaker Ahmed Bahar.
A recent report released by the Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center (MALAM) claimed that during the ceremony Turkish flags were raised while Israeli and US flags were burned. The MALAM said it was likely that Hamas would use the Al- Ahrar network as subcontractors for terrorist activity against Israel.