The Palestinian Authority’s (PA) security services have launched another crackdown on Hamas members in Judea and Samaria, Kol Yisrael radio reported on Sunday night, citing Hamas-affiliated media outlets.
According to the latest reports, more than 100 members of Hamas have been detained in Ramallah, Hevron, Tulkarm and other cities. Among those detained are previously released prisoners, students and educators, Hamas claimed.
The crackdown on Hamas by PA security forces comes despite a reconciliation agreement between Hamas and PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah movement, which led to the formation of a unity government last year.
Despite the unity agreement, the PA has continuously arrested members of Hamas in the PA-assigned areas of Judea and Samaria.
The reconciliation attempt has been rocked by tensions, most notably Hamas's attempt to stage a violent coup in Judea and Samaria against the Palestinian Authority.
The sides have most recently quarreled over the PA’s refusal to take responsibility for the employees from the former-Hamas run government, a key Hamas demand.
Hamas employees were enraged in June when the new unity government did not pay their salaries at the start of the month, despite the 70,000 PA employees in Gaza being able to withdraw their paychecks. The rage boiled over into fistfights, with Hamas eventually shutting down all the banks in Gaza for roughly a week.
In another sign that the unity agreement was crumbling, Hamas spokesperson Sami Abu Zuhri recently said that the six-month mandate of the unity government had ended. He was preceded by the head of Hamas’s politburo, Khaled Mashaal, who said that the Palestinian reconciliation "scene" was not satisfying.