Salafi Power Growing in West Bank

(Ha'aretz) Amos Harel - Israeli security forces confronted an armed presence in the West Bank that was not the Palestinian Authority or Fatah or Hamas, but a radical Salafi Islamic group operating independently. There have been similar clashes between Salafi operatives and Palestinian security forces in recent months. The presence of the Salafis is now being felt in the West Bank nearly a decade after they established themselves in Gaza. "Suddenly, from nowhere, you hear that 30,000 people are attending a gathering at the stadium in the South Hebron Hills," a senior Israeli military official said. The rise in popularity of the Salafis in the West Bank is apparently the result of disappointment with the PA and the difficulties that Hamas is having in presenting a viable alternative. On the margins of the Salafist movements is a violent jihadist arm under the influence of al-Qaeda's ideology.

2013-11-27 00:00:00

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