February 05, 2007

Shin Bet: PA infighting to escalate

From YnetNews:

The clashes in the Palestinian Authority will escalate, Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) deputy chief Y. said during Sunday's cabinet meeting. "Each side is attempting to arm itself and is preparing for the next wave of clashes," he added.

When asked whether Israel could consider releasing Palestinian prisoners, including Marwan Barghouti, Y. replied, "There is a gap between the public image and the intelligence we have on Barghouti's stances and his role as a moderating element."

Asked about reports that Iranian arms experts were seized during Fatah's raid Thursday on the Islamic University in Gaza, he said, "We have no confirmation that there were Iranian elements there. This information should be taken with a grain of salt."

"We do not expect an agreement [between Fatah and Hamas] on a unity government. We believe the parties don't want a civil war, don't want total chaos, but that is exactly what is happening."

"The Fatah organizations are not controlled by the Fatah leadership today.... These organizations have no central command and no father figure, and this is one of the main problems...which has been going on for three years now."