ISIS in Gaza Says Hamas Worse Than ‘Jewish Occupiers’ as Tensions Between Groups Rise
by David Daoud
The Supporters of the Islamic State in Jerusalem, a Salafist organization in Gaza that identifies with the bloodthirsty terror group ISIS, have taken to Twitter to condemn the coastal enclave’s ruling Hamas party, heightening tensions between the two groups, Israel’s NRG reported on Monday.
The group even went so far as to say that the actions of Hamas’ security forces are worse than those of the “Jewish Occupier.”
The statement was issued after Hamas security forces reportedly demolished a mosque in Gaza affiliated with the Salafist group. On Twitter they said, “Armed men from Hamas came to Deir Al-Balah and destroyed the mosque, acting in a way that even the Jewish occupiers and the Americans have not acted.”
Hamas’ forces also arrested one of the group’s leaders last month due to his affiliation with ISIS.
The statement also addressed the leader of ISIS, saying that, “in light of Hamas’ latest action, we renew our allegiance to Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi and call on him to strengthen his influence, to open up a war in Palestine in order to unite together in a war against the Jews and their accomplices.”
The Supporters of the Islamic State in Jerusalem also issued threats against Hamas, promising to “act against chosen targets,” if its prisoners held by Hamas were not released within 72 hours.
“Hamas and its security forces have 72 hours from the release of this statement to free all Salafist (jihadist) prisoners,” said the statement.
They added that if Hamas did not comply, “all options are open to us to respond to [Hamas],” calling on “all of our soldiers” to act against Hamas targets after the 72 hours were up.
On Monday morning, reports stated that an explosive device was detonated near Hamas’ security headquarters, with responsibility for the attack being placed on the ISIS-affiliated Salafist group, according to NRG.
The bomb, which blasted the security headquarters in the Sheikh Radwan neighborhood in the northwestern section of Gaza City just before dawn on Monday damaged the building’s perimeter wall, but did not result in any casualties. The headquarters is used to train police recruits and is run by Hamas.
So far, neither Hamas’ official organs nor the police in Gaza have commented on the explosion.