Long overdue. But AP tut-tuts that they arrested a “pragmatist.” “Israeli troops round up Hamas lawmakers,” by Ali Daragmeh for Associated Press:
NABLUS, West Bank – Israeli troops in the
West Bank arrested more than 30 senior Hamas members Thursday, the army said, including a Cabinet minister, legislators and mayors.
The roundup came hours after Israeli planes struck what the military said were money changing offices and other businesses in Gaza which were channeling funds to Hamas.
The raids were part of a concerted offensive against the Islamic militant group, in retaliation for its rocket attacks from Gaza on Israeli border towns.
The most prominent Hamas politician to be arrested was Education Minister Nasser Shaer, considered a pragmatist in the movement. His wife, Huda, said soldiers knocked on the door of their home in the West Bank city of Nablus and took him away. Troops also seized Shaer’s computer, she said.
It was the second time Shaer was arrested in a roundup of Hamas members in the past year.
Soldiers also arrested former Cabinet minister Abdel Rahman Zeidan, legislators Hamed Bitawi and Daoud Abu Ser, the mayors of the towns of Nablus, Qalqiliya and Beita “” Adli Yaish, Wajih Qawas and Arab Shurafa “” as well as the head of the main Islamic charity in Nablus, Fayad al-Arba.
Troops also searched for Ahmed Haj Ali, a Hamas legislator in Nablus, but didn’t find him at home, neighbors said.
The Israeli military said more than 30 senior Hamas members were arrested.