As daily riots persist in Arab east Jerusalem, instead of attempting to calm the violence, Hamas officials are calling it “the solution to Israeli aggression.”
Mahmoud Zahar from the Hamas leadership in Gaza declared an “intifada” against the Jewish State on Saturday night, in east Jerusalem, which is the capital of Israel, urging Israeli-Arabs and Palestinians alike to continue to the violence.
Speaking to news agency Al-Risala, Zahar is quoted as saying, “Escalating the resistance in the city is the solution to Israeli aggression.”
Zahar also slammed the recent Fatah crackdown on the rioting, with whom Hamas currently sit in a unity government.
“The security coordination is a problem in that is suppresses the intifada against Israeli aggression. The people in the West Bank are fighting on two fronts: the first is the Israeli occupation and the second is the PA’s security forces,” he said.
Despite Israeli officials’ recent attempts to play down the violence, according to the most recent Israel Security Agency report on Jerusalem, terror has risen dramatically in the city, from 22 incidents in May and June to 152 in July and August, representing a worrying 509 percent increase.
On Thursday, the Israeli Science and Technology Minister Yaakov Perry, formerly the head of the Israel Security Agency, warned that the situation in Jerusalem is a “ticking time bomb” which will lead to a full-fledged third intifada.
By all accounts, the unity government between Fatah and Hamas is a weak one, and is already showing signs of crumbling. Last month for example, a large-scale coup was reportedly planned by Hamas in Judea and Samaria (The West Bank) to overthrow the Fatah leadership.
It remains to be seen where the current violence in Jerusalem will lead, as Israel authorities try to find solutions to the daily stonings and violent behavior towards Jerusalem’s Jewish citizens as well as the city’s light rail.
There isn’t much authorities can do though, which was proved last week when an Arab resident of east Jerusalem’s Silwan neighborhood drove his private car into a crowd of people waiting at a light rail stop in the city, injuring many and killing a 3-month-old baby girl.