New PA Security Force to Deploy in Gaza

(Jerusalem Post) Khaled Abu Toameh - The PA is preparing to deploy a special force in Gaza to fight local criminal gangs. The Joint Central Force is headed by Brigadier-General Mohammed al-Sakka, and is subordinate to the National Security Council headed by Prime Minister Qurei. "The force's main task is to enforce law and order and hunt down criminals and murderers," said a senior PA security official in Gaza City. "It will fight against murderers and rapists, not Hamas and Islamic Jihad," he emphasized. Al-Sakka said the new force consists of 1,000 security officers to be deployed in various parts of the Gaza Strip within the next few days. Its members have received special training in anti-riot tactics and combating crime over the past five months. "The members of the new force were carefully selected and are all ambitious young men....They will all wear black uniforms and use white vehicles. They will also receive relatively high salaries because of the risks they face." Earlier this week, thousands of Palestinians demonstrated in Gaza City to demand an end to security chaos, following the killing of Ashraf Zahra, an engineer affiliated with Hamas, who was killed by a stray bullet during a gun battle in Gaza City between rival clans.

2004-12-29 00:00:00

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