Ramallah- Several members of al-Qassam Brigades have resigned in protest of the method of execution carried out on the former brigade official Mahmmod Shitiwi last week, informed Palestinian sources reported. Al-Qassam Brigade is the military wing of the Palestinian Hamas organization.
Sources also told Asharq Al-Awsat it was after disputes breaking out between the military brigade and Hamas on how to serve Shitiwi his death sentence that family members and those close to Shitiwi have refrained from performing their assigned tasks.
Most of the protest concentrated in the Zaytun Quarter, located in Gaza, which Shitiwi was responsible for.
The execution of Shitiwi still rolls in flurry between al-Qassam Brigade and Hamas. What deepened the strife even more was that the execution was carried out in public and in complete disregard to Shitiwi’s family history of association with “al-Qassam” and Hamas since their establishment.
Shitiwi’s family had directed violent accusations against leaders in the al-Qassam Brigade. They argued that Shitiwi was sentenced to death, not because of moral and behavioral perversion, but because of internal quarrels within the brigade.
The former Zaytun Quarter official is considered to be the first al-Qassam Brigade member whose execution was publicly announced.
In the past years, the Brigades usually cover up executions of their members by saying they were martyred in jihadist missions, according Shitiwi’s family.
It is worth noting that Shitiwi’s long history of actively belonging to the brigade, since its establishment, sums up the scale of credibility they are accounted for.
The Shitiwi family and other Hamas members continue with their media campaign against al-Qassam Brigade leaderships. However, those supporting the brigade respond by propagating a wide range of accusations against Shitiwi.
A new division emerged from the controversy, they currently are called “al-Qassamiyoun al-Ahrar” (the free al-Qassam members). They broadcasted a declaration criticizing Shitiwi’s execution and condemning the verdict. They considered his death a horrendous murder and a sign of great oppression.
The new defector group requested the formation of a neutral investigation committee, al-Qassam Brigade made no statement on the subject.