Hamas attacks ‘unfair’ Amnesty report alleging war crimes in Gaza
Hamas dismissed the Wednesday report as "unfair and unprofessional." (AFP/File)
Hamas on Wednesday dismissed as “unfair and unprofessional” a report by Amnesty International that accused its security forces of killing and torturing Palestinians during last year’s Operation Protective Edge.
The Hamas Interior Ministry condemned the report, which was released for publication early Wednesday. “Then report was based on sensationalism and exaggeration of a few incidents that took place under unusual circumstances during the Israeli aggression,” said Interior Ministry spokesman Eyad al-Bazm. “This is an unprofessional report.”
Al-Bazm said that Hamas was prepared to cooperate with local and international human rights organizations wishing to investigate the situation in the Gaza Strip.
Hamas representative Mohamed Faraj al-Ghul also blasted the Amnesty International report, which accused his movement of carrying out summary executions of “collaborators” during last year’s war.
Al-Ghul described the report as “unlawful and biased in favor of Israeli occupation.”
He claimed that the report was “lacking in transparency and objectivity,” adding that it was also full of distortions because it “blames the victims, who are the Palestinian people.”
The Hamas official said that Israel alone bears the responsibility for the killing of “collaborators” because it launched airstrikes on security installations where they were being held. He said that some Palestinians who had been sentenced to death for “collaboration” with Israel managed to escape from detention because of the Israeli attacks.
“The report ignored the systematic crimes perpetrated by the occupation against the Palestinian people,” the Hamas official added. “It accuses the victims who were being killed and describes them as murderers.”
A statement released by Hamas called on Amnesty International “to adopt professional methods before making false allegations.” It said that Hamas was not responsible for the executions that took place in the Gaza Strip during the conflict. “The occupation alone bears responsibility for recruiting the collaborators whose role was to kill, sabotage and cause chaos.” The statement claimed that some of the Palestinian victims mentioned in the report were killed by families of their victims.
By Khaled Abu Toameh