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PCHR Condemns Attempted Assassination of Chief of Internal Security Services in Gaza

Ref: 80/2017 


The Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) condemns the attempted assassination of General Tawfiq Abu Na’im, Head of the Internal Security Services in Gaza on Friday, 27 October 2017.  Unidentified persons planted an explosive device in his car after performing the Friday Prayer.  PCHR stresses that efforts should be intensified to encounter any attempt to destabilize the Gaza Strip and to act immediately in order to prosecute the perpetrators and bring them to justice.

At approximately 13:20 on Friday, 27 October 2017, an explosion occurred in the General Abu Na’im’s car as he exited the ‘Abdel Fattah Abu al-Hussein Mosque, north of al-Nussairat, following the Friday Prayer.  As a result, he sustained shrapnel wounds throughout his body.  According to eyewitnesses, Abu Na’im was near his car when the explosion occurred, wounding him and another 26-year-old young man namely Ahmed Khaled Abu Hjeir, who sustained a shrapnel wound to the right foot.  The two wounded were taken to Shuhadaa’ al-Aqsa Hospital for medical treatment, and then Abu Na’im was referred to al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza City.  Doctors there said that he sustained minor to moderate wounds.  Officers of the security services immediately cordoned off the area to examine the scene and open an investigation into the incident to identify the circumstances and perpetrators.  The Security series and police refuse to give any information regarding the incident.

Eyad al-Buzom, Spokeperson of the Interior and National Security Ministry, declared that General Tawfiq Abu Na’im survived a failed attempt of assassination after his car was exploded in al-Nussairat refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip.

Hamas Movement Said that Israel is behind the attempted assassination of Abu Na’im as Isma’il Haniyah, Chief of Hamas Political Bureau, stated, “regardless who is behind this, Israel and its cronies are responsible.”  Khalil al-Hayyah, Deputy Chief of Hamas, said that Israel is behind this failed attack and tries to undermine the reconciliation agreement which has been reached this month.

 It should be mentioned that Abu Na’im is a former prisoner released in the 2011prisoners exchange deal and has been Chief of the security services in Gaza since 2015 during the current critical stage in the Palestinian reconciliation process, which started with the Cairo understandings this month.

Thus, PCHR strongly condemns the assassination crime of Internal Security Service in Gaza and former prisoner Abu Na’im and understands the necessary security procedures taken to prevent impunity.  PCHR also emphasizes that the judicial authorities should uncover the truth and bring the perpetrators to justice.  However, this should be paired with maintaining the rule of law.