Fighting between rival Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas has led to human rights abuses in both the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, according to a new report by Human Rights Watch. A Palestinian human rights organization recently drew similar conclusions. Both sides have admitted to at least some of the findings of the report.


Washington Post:

Dmitri Diliani, a Fatah spokesman in Jerusalem, said there were “definitely abuses of human rights and we are committed to fixing them.” But he added: “The violations in the West Bank stem from the fact that Israel has not permitted our security forces to train and has destroyed our police stations and jails. In Gaza, they stem from a military coup and a refusal to accept the other. It is a mistake to compare these two situations.”

In Gaza, Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum told the Associated Press that “mistakes” had been made by Hamas forces and that violators were being punished.

Human Rights Watch said that over the past year, Fatah-run security forces in the West Bank have arrested hundreds of Hamas members and supporters, detaining many without warrants and torturing prisoners under interrogation. The most common form of torture was forcing detainees to hold stress positions for prolonged periods, Human Rights Watch said.

The report found that Hamas forces in Gaza committed many of the same abuses and that three detainees died in custody in Gaza, apparently from torture.

Read more

Wait, before you go…

If you're reading this, you probably already know that non-profit, independent journalism is under threat worldwide. Independent news sites are overshadowed by larger heavily funded mainstream media that inundate us with hype and noise that barely scratch the surface.  We believe that our readers deserve to know the full story. Truthdig writers bravely dig beneath the headlines to give you thought-provoking, investigative reporting and analysis that tells you what’s really happening and who’s rolling up their sleeves to do something about it.

Like you, we believe a well-informed public that doesn’t have blind faith in the status quo can help change the world. Your contribution of as little as $5 monthly or $35 annually will make you a groundbreaking member and lays the foundation of our work.

Support Truthdig