Skip to main content

Abbas’ advisor admits Hamas used civilians as human shields: Hamas hid Israeli hostages in ”simple civilian infrastructure”

PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’ Advisor on Religious Affairs and Islamic Relations Mahmoud Al-Habbash: “The Israeli occupation forces committed an additional massacre at the Nuseirat refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip (sic., refers to Operation Arnon in which 4 Israeli hostages were freed during the 2023 Gaza war; see note below). Hundreds of civilians fell as Martyrs and wounded people,... This is a refugee camp. The infrastructure there is a simple civilian one.  It has a very large population density…”

BBC Arabic TV host: “The Israeli army spokesperson and senior Israeli officials all claimed that the killing of the civilians in Nuseirat is Hamas’ responsibility. They say that Hamas is the one that hid the Israeli detainees (i.e., hostages) in a crowded refugee camp, therefore it is the one that bears the responsibility.” ...

Mahmoud Al-Habbash: Who created all these violent rounds of conflict, this hatred, and this lack of security and stability in the entire region? Did the problem start for example on Oct. 7, [2023] (i.e., Hamas’ massacre in Israel)? Let no one understand me as defending Hamas’ policy, I’m the first who criticizes it... The responsibility falls first of all and before everything [else] on the cause for all these disasters that are befalling the region, and it is the existence of the Israeli occupation. If there were no occupation there would be no Hamas, there would be no resistance, and there would be no violence.... Releasing the Israeli hostages or Israeli captives is an excuse. Just like everything that happened on Oct. 7 was an excuse for Israel to spill the Palestinian people’s blood... The Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip is unfortunately between the rock of Israel and the hard place of Hamas.

BBC Arabic TV placed text on screen during the interview:

Text on screen: “The Israeli army announced the ‘release’ [quotation marks in source] of four living hostages in a special operation in the Gaza Strip”

[PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’ Advisor on Religious Affairs and Islamic Relations Mahmoud Al-Habbash, Facebook page, June 9, 2024] 

Mahmoud Al-Habbash also serves as Chairman of the Supreme Council for Shari'ah Justice. In August 2019, PA Chairman Abbas dismissed all his advisors by Presidential decree. It is unclear what their status is today.

Operation Arnon - an Israeli rescue operation during the 2023 Gaza war, in which Israeli special forces rescued 4 Israeli hostages from the Nuseirat refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip on June 8, 2024. The hostages - Noa Argamani (25), Almog Meir Jan (21), Andrey Kozlov (27), and Shlomi Ziv (40) - had been taken captive from the Nova musical festival on Oct. 7, 2023, and were being held in two separate nearby locations in residential buildings by Palestinian civilians who were being paid by Hamas, in addition to armed Hamas terrorists who were guarding the hostages. Palestinian terrorists opened fire on the Israeli forces while they were extricating the hostages, initiating a gun battle in which Israeli Yamam special forces officer Arnon Zamora (36) was killed. Palestinian terrorists and civilians were also killed in the battle, with the Israeli army reporting less than 100 Palestinian casualties, while Hamas' Health Ministry claimed at least 274 Palestinians died.

Hamas war on Israel October 2023 - Over 1,100 Israelis, including over 800 civilians, were murdered and over 5,000 wounded, in addition to approximately 251 who were abducted into the Gaza Strip (including 135 later released or liberated - 19 of them whose bodies were retrieved - and at least 41 who were killed and had their bodies held), in a Hamas terror war that began when approximately 3,000 Hamas terrorists and thousands of Gazan civilians broke through Israel's security fence at the Gaza Strip border and launched a surprise attack, taking control of several Israeli towns and attacking a music festival on the Jewish holiday of Simchat Torah, which fell on the Sabbath, Oct. 7, 2023. During the massacre the terrorists tortured, raped, shot, beheaded, and burned their victims alive, murdering entire families and leaving at least 21 children without parents. Hamas terrorists also fired at least 5,000 rockets at Israeli population centers. In response, Israel launched Operation Iron Swords to counter the Hamas terror threat. Hezbollah terrorists in Lebanon joined Hamas' terror war starting from the following day, attacking Israel from the north. Occasional rocket launches and shootings continued from Lebanon throughout the war. A ceasefire and prisoner exchange deal began on Nov. 24, 2023, in which Israel agreed to release 150 terrorist prisoners, pause drone surveillance in the Gaza Strip, and allow movement between the northern and southern Gaza Strip, in return for 50 Israeli female and child hostages held by Hamas. The deal was subsequently extended with additional releases, until Hamas violated the agreement and resumed attacking on Dec. 1, 2023.

RelatedView all ❯