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Hamas slams Fayyad's decision to close its charities
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20:46, August 28, 2007

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A spokesman for the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) in Gaza Tuesday slammed a decision by Palestinian caretaker government to close down Hamas-related charities in the West Bank.

Fawzi Barhoum, Hamas' spokesman in Gaza, said in a statement that the decision "is a political conspiracy against Hamas movement ... is part of the declared war against Hamas to satisfy the Israelis and Americans."

In a news conference held in Ramallah on Monday evening, Riyad al-Maliki, the information minister in the government led by Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, announced that a decision to close down 104 charities was taken.

Since Hamas, which is listed as a terrorist organization by Europe and the United States, took control of Gaza in mid June, President Mahmoud Abbas had taken a series of measures and decisions to weaken the movement's influence.

"Abbas and Fayyad are held fully responsible for the consequences of their decision to close Hamas-related charities, the spokesman said, adding that the decision would be harmful to poor Palestinian families.

He affirmed that the decision by Fayyad's government would be valid only in the West Bank which Hamas doesn't control, adding that "in Gaza it won't be valid because there is a legal government."

"This decision would give an excuse to the sources of donations to dry up financing those charities," said Barhoum.

In an interview with several Palestinian newspapers published on Tuesday, Salam Fayyad denied that the move targeted Hamas, claiming that the charities which would be closed had "committed legal, financial and administrative violations."

Source: Xinhua

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