Fatah Official Accuses Al Qaeda of 'Helping Zionists'
Palestinian Authority (PA) officials and Al Qaeda are at odds Sunday, according to Ma'ariv, after Al Qaeda leader Ayman Al-Zawhiri accused [PA ruling party] Fatah of being a "traitor" to Palestinian Arabs.
"Fatah claims that it is a national liberation movement but it has become a movement that sells out its country and its citizens," Al-Zawhiri is said to have stated, in a broadcast on a network closely associated with the global jihad terror organization.
Calling PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas a "traitor," Al-Zawhiri added, "Abbas is [willing to] renounce the rights of refugees to please the United States."
Unnamed Fatah officials responded by claiming that Al Qaeda is "helping the Zionist agenda" and blasted Al-Zawhiri for "ripping into the Palestinian people while Abbas faces threats and pressure from the US and Israel."
Fatah spokesman Ahmed Assaf officially condemned the statements Sunday.
"Statements made by Ayman Al-Zawhiri, in which he attacks Abbas and Fatah, confirm once again the extent of his involvement in the Zionist project and creating discord between Arab and Muslim peoples," Assaf stated, calling Al-Zawhiri a "hypocrite."
"They consider the whole world a playing ground to carry out their aims, but they have not done one thing to end the Israeli occupation," he added.
The PA and Al Qaeda have been at odds before. In December, an Al-Qaeda-inspired group said it had infiltrated Judea and Samaria as part of its war against “the Jews, Christians, infidels and the Palestinian Authority."