A tribunal composed by members of the Islamist Hamas terrorist organization controlling the Gaza Strip convicted three men of alleged collaboration with the state of Israel on December 6. One of them was sentenced to death, while the other two will serve prison terms.
A statement issued by Hamas declared, "The military court handed down a death sentence against one collaborator with the occupation, and prison terms of seven years and three years for two other collaborators.” No additional details on the men were provided.
Even while Palestinian Authority law states that the president must approve all execution orders before they can be carried out, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas was not consulted, since Hamas no longer recognizes the legitimacy of his presidency.
This will not be the first execution of so-called collaborators. in April 2010, Hamas subjected two men to capital punishment on charges of collaboration with Israel. These were the first such executions to be carried out since the Islamist movement violently seized control of the Gaza Strip in 2007.
In 2008, during Israel''s Operation Cast Lead in Gaza, at least eight people were murdered for allegedly helping Israel fight terrorism by providing information on local terrorist groups. The eight, who were prisoners in Gaza''s main prison, escaped imprisonment following bombardment by Israel''s Air Force. Following the airstrike, terrorists and relatives of terrorists killed by Israel''s military rushed to the prison and caught several of the escaping inmates and immediately killed them.
In September 201, Hamas was cracking down on collaborators with Israel, detaining residents of the Gaza Strip, including two physicians, an engineer, and members of the Hamas itself. Hamas refused to identify those who were arrested.
The Hamas campaign has created fear and suspicion. According to local media, a resident said that the Islamist campaign has had a really bad impact on society.” People no longer trust each other, he said, “We don''t talk openly with each other.” According to Human Rights Watch, Hamas has killed at least 32 alleged informers and political opponents during and after Operation Cast Lead and maimed dozens of others.