Fatah Afraid to Return to Gaza

Hundreds of Fatah terrorists who escaped rival Hamas members in Gaza have asked Israel to allow them to remain in Judea and Samaria.

Maayana Miskin , | updated: 12:30 PM

Fatah rally in Ramallah
Fatah rally in Ramallah
Israel news photo: Flash 90

Hundreds of Fatah terrorists from Gaza have been living in Yehudah and Shomron (Judea and Samaria) for more than two years after fleeing from Hamas during bloody fights for control of Gaza in 2007. The Palestinian Authority has now filed an official request asking Israel to allow Fatah members to stay where they are.

The roughly 400 terrorists who fled Gaza are unable to move freely throughout Yehudah and Shomron for fear that they will be stopped at a checkpoint and forced to return to their place of residence – Gaza – where, they say, they could face revenge attacks.

A PA source said Israel has not refused the request outright, but has asked each of the 400 to submit an individual request for Yehudah and Shomron residency. Israel is generally cautious about granting Gaza residents permits to move to Yehudah and Shomron out of concern that terrorists could move from place to place in order to set up new terror cells and plan attacks.

Several dozen Fatah terrorists were killed in the 2007 battle for Gaza, and hundreds were wounded. Intermittent Fatah-Hamas clashes have been reported in Gaza, Yehudah and Shomron over the past two years as well, and hundreds have been killed or wounded.