Gulf media is reporting on moves by Hamas in Gaza to impose new and harsh punishments for criminal offenses to include lashings, executions and punishments such as cutting off the hand of a thief. According to a Gulf News report:
March 27, 2014 Ramallah: A move by Hamas to replace an almost 80-year old punitive law with a new conservative one has been condemned by Palestinian factions. The Popular Front for Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), along with several other Palestinian factions, have labelled the move as an attempt to impose Hamas’ conservative agenda on the whole of Palestinian society.
Faraj Al Ghoul, the head of the Legal Department at the Palestinian Legislative Council in Gaza, recently announced that the Palestinian parliament in Gaza will impose a new punitive law to replace Law No 74 for the year 1936.
‘Hamas’ attempts to pass its new punitive law in Gaza are illegal as the Palestinian Legislative Council’s term has already expired and is therefore not authorised to issue such a law,’ the PFLP statement said, pointing out that the law that was passed by a parliament dominated entirely by Hamas.
‘The new law will harm the interests of the Palestinians and perpetuate the Palestinian internal split. Hamas must retreat and show priority and preference to the higher Palestinian interests,’ it went on to say.
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In May 2013, the GMBDW reported that Hamas officials were publicly debating a proposed penal code that would apply its version of Islamic law to Gaza citizens.
Other related developments include:
- In May 2013, the GMBDW reported that Hamas officials were publicly debating a proposed penal code that would apply its version of Islamic law to Gaza citizens.
- In April 2013, UK media reported that Gaza was “gripped with fear that Hamas is driving the population towards militant Islamic fundamentalism.”
- In April 2013, AFP reported on a new law banning mixed sex schooling in the Gaza Strip which will “ban the mixing of students from the two sexes in educational establishments after the age of nine, and work to ‘feminise’ girls’ schools.” The reported noted that Hamas has in the past had enforced conservative religious laws, including telling schoolgirls in Gaza to wear traditional full-length robes and headscarves.
- In May 2012, an Israeli journalist reported details on the treatment of women under the Hamas regime in Gaza.
- In March of 2011, the Daily Telegraph published an article titled “Gaza’s Elected Islamist Rulers Crack Down On Secular Community” which reported on the impact of the imposition by Hamas of its version of Islamic law.
- In February 2011, Hamas imposed a ban on motorcycle riders from carrying women on the back seat.
The Hamas charter says that it is “one of the wings of the Muslim Brothers in Palestine” and soon after Hamas took over the Gaza strip, Muslim Brotherhood representatives traveled to Gaza from Egypt through the newly-opened border to review Hamas military formations. A Hamas journalist has acknowledged the role that the “international Muslim Brotherhood” has played in providing funds for the purchase of weapons and Hamas is known to be supported financially and politically by the global Muslim Brotherhood. A Muslim Brotherhood spokesman revealed that a coalition of London-based Muslim groups, including the Muslim Brotherhood, were behind the mass demonstrations staged to protest Israeli actions in the 2008 Gaza war and the Global Muslim Brotherhood and its Turkish affiliates were also intimately involved, along with the Turkish government, in the June 2010 Gaza flotilla that was involved in a violent altercation with Israeli naval forces. Following a period of seeming ascension related to the period of Egyptian rule by the Muslim Brotherhood, the organization was forced to scramble to try and find other state sponsors after Mohamed Morsi was deposed as President. In September 2013, it appeared that Hamas had succeeded in re-establishing close ties with Iran. In January 2013, Israeli intelligence sources claimed that Turkey has replaced Iran as the chief source of Hamas financing.