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July 14, 2009 Special Dispatch No. 2446

Salafi-Jihadi Group in Gaza: "We Intend to Carry Out a Big Operation to Prove Our Allegiance to Bin Laden"

July 14, 2009
Special Dispatch No. 2446

On July 11, 2009, the Palestinian Authority government daily Al-Ayyam published an interview with Abu Al-Mu'tasem Mahmoud Muhammad Taleb, a commander in one of the Gaza-based Salafi-jihadi groups known collectively as Jaljalat (a shrill sound). The interview sheds new light on the history, ideology, and operations of Jaljalat, revealing information hitherto unknown to the public. Specifically, Abu Al-Mu'tasem, who escaped from a Hamas jail four months ago, states that Hamas's decision to run in the Palestinian 2006 general elections triggered internal strife within the organization and led members of the 'Izz Adin Al-Qassam Brigades to desert Hamas and join the Salafi-jihadi stream in Gaza. Abu Al-Mu'tasem makes it clear that he does not intend to turn himself in to Hamas, and claims that if Hamas attempts to capture him, he will blow himself with the explosive vest that he always carries. ...

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