West Bank: Israel abducts over 33 senior Hamas members
Israeli troops abducted more than 30 senior Hamas members early Thursday, the army said, including a Cabinet minister, legislators and mayors. The most prominent Hamas politician to be kidnapped was Education Minister Nasser Shaer. His wife, Huda, said soldiers knocked on the door of their home in the West Bank city of Nablus and took him away. Troops also seized Shaer's computer, she said, according to the AP.
It was the second time Shaer was arrested in a roundup of Hamas members in the past year.
Israeli soldiers also took with them former cabinet minister Abdel Rahman Zeidan, legislators Hamed Bitawi and Daoud Abu Ser, the mayors of the towns of Nablus, Qalqiliya and Beita - Adli Yaish, Wajih Qawas and Arab Shurafa - as well as the head of the main Islamic charity in Nablus, Fayad al-Arba.
Occupation troops also searched for Ahmed Haj Ali, a Hamas legislator in Nablus, but didn't find him at home, neighbors said.
The Israeli army confirmed more than 30 senior Hamas members were arrested.
Last summer, Israel arrested scores of senior Hamas members in retaliation for the capture of an Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit by Hamas-allied activists.