PA denies report on Egyptian arms shipment
The Palestinian Authority on Thursday denied Egypt had transfered a large quantity of arms and ammunition to Palestinian Authority security forces in the Gaza Strip on Wednesday, with Israel's approval. These forces are largely allied to PA president Mahmoud Abbas, and draw their numbers from his Fatah movement.
According to the Israeli press, the move was carried out in a bid to bolster Fatah affiliated groups, following recent clashes with Hamas forces.
On his part, Abbas spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeineh denied that the transfer had occurred. "The talk about the president's security services receiving arms is unfounded and not true at all," he said.
According to Haaretz, however, the shipment included 2,000 AK-47 rifles, 20,000 magazines and two million rounds of ammunition. The arms and ammunition were transfered from Egypt to Israel through the Kerem Shalom crossing, in coordination with the Israeli army.
Another Israeli paper, Yedioth Ahronoth had earlier reported that similar arms shipments would be shipped from Jordan to the West Bank also for Abbas' presidential guards.
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