Palestinian security sources in Gaza reported that the director of the Palestinian Intelligence Services, Tariq Abu Rajab, was seriously injured in an explosion late Saturday morning in the Gaza City building.
One of his guards, Ala’ Abu Hasira was killed in the blast, while six other people were injured. The explosion occurred inside an elevator in the Intelligence building.
Abu Rajab survived an assassination attempt in 2004; he suffered serious wounds after an armed group attacked his convoy in Gaza.
After Saturday’s explosion, Abu Rajab underwent emergency surgery in Al Shifa Hospital in Gaza City, and was transferred to an Israeli hospital.
The Palestinenet news website reported that the streets of Gaza City around the building and the hospital are in a state of utter chaos and tension following the explosion.
The explosion took place in spite that the security measures were already tight around the Intelligence building, but now it is even more fortified, the Palestinenet added.
The initial reports from Gaza indicated that a bomb had been planted in one of the elevators in the building and exploded at the entrance of Abu Rajab’s office elevator. Palestinian security sources said that the assassination attempt had occurred as a result of direct firing at Abu Rajab while he was inside the elevator.
And a third version of the events came from spokesperson Khalid Abu Hilal who reported that the large explosion which rocked the General Intelligence building Saturday morning in the Gaza City was caused by grenades in the possession of one of Abu Rajab’s escorts which fell accidentally.
In the first reaction by the Fateh movement to the incident, Abdel Aziz Shaheen, member of Fateh Revolutionary Council, put responsibility on what he named the black militia of the Palestinian Interior “Special Forces.” The security chaos and disturbance, he said, was to stop the deployment of these troops in the streets of Gaza.
Regardless of the motives behind the incident, it will contribute significantly in strengthening the resentment among Fateh and Hamas activists, and between the institutions of the presidency and the government, especially as the General Intelligence was operational under the auspices of the Presidency, which is Fateh, especially after several Hamas activists were killed in recent clashes.
Two weeks ago Abu Rajab headed the delegation of Palestinian security talks held in the Jordanian capital Amman. He was briefed by security officials on the results of investigations in Jordan regarding allegations that a Hamas cell smuggled weapons into the neighboring country.