Palestinian groups described Israel’s allegations that Palestinian resistance movements being aided by Al Qaeda as attempts by Israel to “elude the world and label the Palestinian struggle as terrorism.”
“We reject Al Qaeda intervention in our conflict with Israel,” several Palestinian factions told Al Bawaba.
The Israeli army chief of staff, Moshe Yaalon, announced Wednesday that the two British nationals who carried out the most recent Tel Aviv bombing were recruited by Osama bin Laden’s Al Qaeda network on behalf of Hamas. The Palestinian group’s (Hamas) military wing, al Qassam Brigades, claimed responsibility for the bombing attack along with Fatah’s al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades. For its part, Hamas denounced Yaalon’s accusations and described them as “an attempt to label the Palestinian resistance as terrorism.”
“Israel tries to link our movement to Al Qaeda in an attempt at exposing us to the same antagonism Al Qaeda gets from the American public,” prominent Hamas leader Mahmoud al Zahhar told Al Bawaba.
Zahhar denies any links between Hamas and Al Qaeda, saying “Had there been any links, Britain, the United States and Israel would have uncovered them already.”
For its part, Islamic Jihad described the Israeli attempt to ‘link’ the Palestinian resistance movements to Al Qaeda as attempts to “elude the world by offering a justification for the massacre of Palestinians.”
“Such Israeli attempts are not new as there have been similar attempts to elude the world by suggesting that there are ties between Al Qaeda and the Palestinian movements,” Islamic Jihad spokesman, Abdulla al Shami told Al Bawaba. He reiterated that “Israel has no evidence to prove its allegations, however they [Israel] want to justify their massacres and crimes against the Palestinian people by attempting to prove to the world that their war on the Palestinians is an extension of the US led war on terrorism.”
Fatah also asserted its rejection of any Al Qaeda interference in the conflict. Fatah secretary in the West Bank, Hussein al Sheikh, told Al Bawaba, “we refuse Al Qaeda participation…the Israeli effort to draw the ‘link’ between the Palestinian groups and Al Qaeda aims at moving the world’s public opinion against the resistance of the Palestinian people, and is also an attempt at label Palestinianians as terrorists,” stated Sheikh.
On Thursday, Israel killed a Hamas official in the Gaza Strip. It said Eyad al-Bek, 30, was once linked to Al Qaeda and wounding three other Palestinians, media reports said. (Albawaba.com)