Prominent Salafi faction leader associated with Osama bin Laden's terrorist organization manages to escape Hamas jail in Strip
Ali Waked Published: 12.24.09, 11:53 / Israel News
Mahmoud Taleb, one of the prominent leaders of the al-Qaeda-affiliated Salafi faction, escaped a Hamas prison in the Gaza Strip, a senior Salafi element reported Thursday. Details of the escape remain unclear.
Taleb was being held at the prison along with other operatives and senior elements in al-Qaeda-affiliated groups, having been arrested by Hamas internal security apparatus officers.
Abu Hamza, who notified of the escape has asked the Hamas government to release all al-Qaeda prisoners from jail in light of Israeli threats to attack the Gaza Strip, rendering the Palestinian facilities unsafe.
Palestinian security forces in the Strip held large-scale arrests of operatives associated with al-Qaeda after one of the Salafi faction leaders challenged Hamas' rule and declared the creation of an Islamist emirate in Rafah last August.
Abdul Latif Musa pledged allegiance to Osama Bin Laden as the emirate's leader. Clashes erupted following the declaration between Hamas and Salafi faction members in a Rafah mosque resulting in the death of dozens.
Hamas recently released several al-Qaeda-affiliated prisoners who were arrested during the August clashes as a gesture ahead of Eid al-Adha.
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