Hamas has conducted a self-defense and weapons course for the wives of their officials, apparently due to fear of Israeli assassination attempts.
In a report by the Palestinian SAFA news agency, translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute, head of the security and defense apparatus in the Gaza Strip, General Bahjat Abu Sultan is quoted speaking about the training program, in which hundreds of female family members of Hamas ministers, deputy ministers, and security and defense commanders were instructed theoretically and practically, including in field exercises.
Abu Sultan further described the content of the course as including instruction in the methods of Israeli intelligence agencies in sending Palestinian collaborators to infiltrate Hamas, and raising awareness of the social and political situation in the Gaza Strip while emphasizing the importance of protecting Hamas officials and their households from harm by "the enemy," Israel.
As for the field training, the Hamas General explained that they are geared towards "preparing them to defend themselves and to cope with the genuine danger that these officials and their homes will be targeted by the enemies."
The whole course took eight days, and included 40 hours of training and study, ending last Sunday.
A different Palestinian media source quoted Abu-Sultan describing plans for a similar course for the children of Hamas officials.
'Abd Al-Karim Al-Sha'er, director of the instruction department of the security and defense apparatus, explained further that the training of the women had included: "Israeli methods of causing Palestinians to collaborate with Israel and how to protect oneself from them; securing houses; cyber-security; dealing with suspicious objects; psychological warfare; first aid; weapon assembly, disassembly, and use; and visiting an exhibit of various explosive devices in order to recognize suspicious objects and different types of explosives."
MEMRI also gathered some reactions from Palestinians to this training program, with many complaining that this shows how much Hamas worry only about the safety of their officials, and not about the rest of the population.
Others remarked that this training for the wives of the officials is entirely unnecessary, as the moment Israel attacks, the officials will flee with their families to their previously prepared and stocked underground hiding places.