Islamic Resistance Movement, Hamas, announced that it will abduct Israeli soldiers in retaliation to the arrest of, Ahmad Sa’adat, Secretary General of the leftist Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, (PFLP). The PFLP military wing launched the “Red Arrow” operations in retaliation to the arrest.
Hamas member of the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC), Fathi Hammad, stated that the movement will retaliate to the arrest, and military operation in Jericho, against Sa’adat, who is also a newly elected member of the PLC,
“This crime, this attack, will cause retaliation”, Hammad said, “Our people will rescue all of the detainees, they will rescue Sa’adat”.
“The Zionist enemy chose to arrest Sa’adat, and his comrades, we will abduct soldiers to swap them with Palestinian detainees”. Hammad added, “Hamas is capable of protecting all of the Palestinian factions, and the Palestinian people”.
Also, Hammad questioned the U.S and British guarantees and intentions especially after the British and U.S guards in the Jericho prison compound left the area shortly before the Israeli army invaded Jericho and surrounded the prison.
“This is a conspiracy, a big conspiracy headed by the United States and the Britain”, Hammad stated, “They conspired with Israel in order to arrest Sa’adat and his comrades”.
Meanwhile, the PFLP announced that it launched the “Red Arrow” in retaliation to the attack and the arrest of its secretary general.
The Abu Ali Mustafa brigades, the military wing of the PFLP, fired several homemade shells at a military post, east of the Gaza Strip.
The Brigades said that the firing of the shells is part of a series of attacks against Israeli military targets in retaliation to the arrest of Sa’adat and his comrades.
“If they harm Sa’adat, we will retaliate hard, and strike back the same way we did after soldiers assassinated Abu Ali Mustafa”, a statement released by the brigades reads.
Abu Ali Mustafa, Secretary General of the PFLP, was killed in a targeted assassination by two rockets fired from an Israeli helicopter as he sat at his desk in Ramallah on August 27, 2001.
He was one of the most senior Palestinian political leaders killed by Israel. The PFLP renamed their armed wing in the Occupied Palestinian Territories after him, as the Abu Ali Mustafa Brigades, while he was succeeded as Secretary General by Ahmad Sa’adat.
In September 1999, after 32 years of exile, Abu Ali Mustafa returned to the West Bank under a deal struck between Yasser Arafat and Israel’s Prime Minister, Ehud Barak. In July 2000 he was elected as the new general secretary of the PFLP after, George Habash, retired.