June 14, 2010 - 12:00am

Hamas security forces on Monday prevented Palestinian activists from holding peaceful demonstration against an Israeli-imposed buffer zone in the Gaza Strip, organizers said.

Hamas policemen seized keys of vehicles that were set to transport tens of Palestinians to demonstrate near the no-go zone to the east of southern Gaza Strip town of Rafah, the Popular Committee Against Buffer Zone said in a statement.

The aim of the demonstration was to "expose the (Israeli) occupation and its aggressive policies," the statement said, adding that preventing people from joining the demonstration " leaves negative effects on the national work and boosts the split and division among the Palestinians."

For two months, since Israel imposed a 300-meter-wide buffer zone in northern and eastern Gaza Strip, leftist factions have been holding weekly demonstrations against this decision. Israeli forces had shot dead a Palestinian youth in one of these demonstrations.

Hamas, which seized control of Gaza by force in 2007, maintains a shaky, undeclared ceasefire with Israel since the end of Gaza war in January last year.


American Task Force on Palestine - 1634 Eye St. NW, Suite 725, Washington DC 20006 - Telephone: 202-262-0017