Hamas officials on Tuesday expressed relief over the failure of calls to stage mass protests against the Islamist movement in the Gaza Strip.
Tamarod, an anonymous group, had called on Palestinians to revolt against Hamas on November 11. It received its inspiration from the Egyptian Tamarod movement, which launched mass protests that eventually brought down the regime of president Mohammed Morsi earlier this year.
The anti-Hamas group published a number of videotapes and leaflets urging Palestinians in the Gaza Strip to rise up. It vowed to end Hamas’s rule on November 11 – a day that passed peacefully and without any protest against the Islamist movement.
The date coincided with the ninth anniversary of the death of Yasser Arafat.
Hamas banned all rallies to commemorate Arafat out of fear that they would be used by Tamarod to initiate a revolt.
Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh on Tuesday praised residents of the Gaza Strip for refusing to heed the group’s calls. He called the Tamarod phenomenon a “conspiracy” by outside powers against the Palestinians and his government.
Over the past few weeks, Hamas security forces have arrested dozens of Palestinians, including journalists, on suspicion of involvement with the group. Some officials have claimed that it is an arm of Egyptian intelligence and the Fatah faction of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.
The Hamas Interior Ministry, which is responsible for security, said in a statement that it would not allow “chaos and anarchy” to return to the Gaza Strip.
“Those who conspired against the Gaza Strip have been dealt a severe blow,” the statement said.
The ministry accused Israel and its “collaborators” in the Gaza Strip of standing behind Tamarod.
Hamas spokesmen said that the fact that nothing happened on November 11 proved that Tamarod was nothing but a “hoax.”
View original Jerusalem Post publication at: http://www.jpost.com/Middle-East/Hamas-calls-dissident-group-a-foreign-conspiracy-after-day-for-revolt-comes-and-goes-331546