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TERRORISM: Spate of Kidnappings in Gaza Strip

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posted on Jul, 16 2004 @ 07:46 AM
The Chief of Police for Gaza and the West Bank, Ghazi al-Jabali, was kidnapped by gunmen when his convoy was ambushed today. He is known as Arafat's "enforcer" in some circles. The gunmen approached his convoy in several cars and opened fire, then smashed the windows of his car and dragged him off. He has since been released unharmed by his captors.
Hours later, Col. Khaled Abu Aloula, Director of Military Coordination, was taken at gunpoint.
Shortly after Col. Aloula's kidnapping, five French citizens - two women and three men - were grabbed from a cafe in the town of Khan Younis. All five have reportedly been released in good condition.
It is believed that a group of disgruntled former Palestinian police officers may behind the kidnappings. They recently were fired from their jobs. Other sources point at the Abu al-Rish Brigades, a faction of Yasser Arafat's Fatah group.

Two of al-Jalabi's bodyguards have been hospitalized after the gun battle.

al Jabali has been assaulted more than once in recent months. A bomb was placed at his home's front door earlier this year, and on a separate occasion a group of men entered his office and beat him. He has been Chief of Police in the troubled area for more than a decade.

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[edit on 16-7-2004 by Banshee]

posted on Jul, 16 2004 @ 11:35 AM
Reuters / haaretz: Palestinian officials: Kidnappers release Gaza police chief
on Friday ca. 5:30 Jerusalem time. (= GMT+3)

during his interrogation, Jabali admitted to stealing $8 million and raping women.

"We gave three years to the Palestinian Authority to carry out reforms. We waited a long time. But they didn't do anything. We are doing this in our way," Abu Iyad, a spokesman for the brigades, said on Al-Jazeera satellite television. "Ghazi Jabali was kidnapped to hold him accountable for his mistakes against our people."

Palestinian police chief Jabali (a longtime associate of PA Chairman Yasser Arafat, came back to Gaza with Arafat in 1994 from exile in Tunis ) is known to have a big dispute over control of security forces in the Gaza Strip with Gaza's strongman Mohammed Dahlan (once head of the Palestinian Preventative Security Forces), accusing him of being a CIA and Israeli agent.

He has made many enemies over the years among Palestinians. His name has been linked to several cases of corruption and immoral behavior in the Palestinian Authority.


posted on Jul, 16 2004 @ 11:48 AM
Well, seems like he's had a lucky escape. From BBC Newa

Gunmen release Gaza police chief Jabali is unpopular with Gazans tired of corruption The Palestinian police chief in Gaza Strip has been released after being abducted by gunmen south of Gaza City.

posted on Jul, 16 2004 @ 01:11 PM
Palestinian police chief Jabali has a long and strong realtionship to Yassir Arafat.

Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat had agreed to the demands of the kidnappers - the Fatah-related Jenin Martyrs Brigades - to dismiss Jabali and put him on trial for suspected corruption.
But Arafat has repeatedly ignored requests from Palestinians to remove Jabali from his post. He briefly fired Jabali earlier this year but reinstated him without offering an explanation.

There is absolute Chaos in Gazastrip:

One hour ago, another Palestinian Official, Colonel Khalid Abu Aloula, Director of Military Coordination has been abducted

Palestinian security officials said the kidnappers were Palestinian policemen who had recently been fired from their jobs. The officials said that earlier in the day Aloula had refused their request to help reinstate them

Al Jazerra: Second Palestinian security official seized


[edit on 16-7-2004 by Riwka]

posted on Jul, 16 2004 @ 02:50 PM
More news: 5 french citizens where kidnapped by Palestinian gunman.

posted on Jul, 16 2004 @ 03:38 PM
Five French citizens - two women and three men were kidnapped in the southern town of Khan Yunis (Gaza Strip) Friday afternoon.

Witnesses said the five were taken to the headquarters of the Palestinian Red Crescent Society in the center of the town. The witnesses said the building was surrounded by about 25 armed men

haaretz: Five French citizens kidnapped in Gaza Strip

Reuters just reported the kidnapping was carried out by militants from the Abu al-Rish brigades, which is linked to Arafat's Fatah fraction

They said the kidnappers demanded to be reinstated in jobs Arafat had fired them from.

Witnesses said dozens of police officers surrounded the Red Crescent building and that militants holding the foreigners inside had turned off the lights. Every few minutes, the gunmen fired shots from a window to ward off the police

Reuters: Palestinian Gunmen Kidnap French Civilians in Gaza


[edit on 16-7-2004 by Riwka]

posted on Jul, 16 2004 @ 04:43 PM
Captors release French nationals kidnapped in Gaza

Witnesses saw the two women leaving the Red Crescent offices escorted by Palestinian security officials.


posted on Jul, 16 2004 @ 09:05 PM
This troubled area in the Middle East shows signs of hotting up even more.

GAZA (Reuters) - Palestinian gunmen demanding sweeping reforms by President Yasser Arafat have freed four French aid workers unharmed in Gaza as a sense of anarchy gripped the tiny territory. A Palestinian police chief and a Palestinian Authority member were kidnapped in other incidents on Friday, prompting two Palestinian security chiefs to quit over what an official called a "quickening state of collapse of authority" in Gaza. The abductions reflected a growing challenge to Arafat's rule by militants trying to strengthen their position before Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon carries out a planned withdrawal of troops and settlers from Gaza by the end of 2005.

Following the release of all those previously held, , the world may have sighed in collective relief, but this was obviously a premature reaction.
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