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Hamas renews call for 'revolt' against Palestinian Authority

Hamas deputies condemn the latest arrests of its members and supporters at the hands of the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank
Senior political leader of Hamas Ismail Haniyeh visits Hamas's annual youth summer camp in Gaza City, Gaza on 28 July 2015 (AA)

Deputies of the Hamas government which rules Gaza on Wednesday renewed calls for a "revolt" against the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority over its sweeping arrests of its members.

In an act of defiance, the deputies held a meeting in the parliament building in Gaza City, which has not convened officially since 2007 when Hamas expelled PA security forces after a week of deadly clashes.

They called for "an uprising and a revolt against the political arrests" carried out by the PA in the West Bank and for Palestinian factions to adopt "a firm stand against the authority's crimes against the resistance and its members".

The MPs condemned the PA's security cooperation with Israel under the 1993 Oslo accords as amounting to "high treason" that served "Zionist security" interests.

On 7 July, Hamas accused the PA of having arrested "more than 200" of its members and supporters in the West Bank, in a sweep that MP Khalil al-Haya charged was aimed solely at "assisting the occupier" against anti-Israeli activists.

A Palestinian unity agreement signed in April 2014 sought to end years of bad blood between Hamas and Fatah, the party of PA chief and Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas.

A unity government of technocrats, approved by both sides, was formed as a result.

But it has been ineffective and despite Hamas agreeing on the PA takeover of the impoverished coastal enclave, the latter has so far declined to show any serious intention of moving back to Gaza, which is under strict Israeli blockade.