October 11, 2012 - 12:00am

GAZA, Oct. 11 (Xinhua) -- Islamic Hamas movement obstructed Thursday the declaration of a new Islamic party in the Gaza Strip, a spokesman for the Al-Nour Salafi party said.

Hamas, which controls Gaza, summoned the members of the party's founding committee for questioning "in order to prevent the launching of the party" that was scheduled Thursday, said the spokesman, who calls himself Abu Outba.

He added that the party will ask for more clarifications from Hamas before deciding on next steps.

A source from Hamas government denied that the Al-Nour party was banned from announcing its beginning, noting that delaying the launching ceremonies was related to problems in licensing.

But Outba said his party applied for a license more than a month ago and Hamas delayed the approval "to provide a pretext for not allowing the starting of the party."

The party is part of what is known here as "the conventional Salafism," which bears an ideology stricter than that of Hamas, calling for implementing Islamic law and imposing an Islamic lifestyle on the society.

However, the party's mechanisms to achieve their goals are different from the Jihadi Salafists who adopt an al-Qaida-style violent tactics.

Hamas has a tense record with the Jihadists in Gaza, who challenged its rule in 2007 before Hamas clashed with a group of Jihadists in a one-day standoff that left 26 Palestinians dead.


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