RAMALLAH, West Bank, (AP) -Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said Friday that Fatah leaders and security officers held responsible for the fall of Gaza to Hamas would be punished in line with findings from a report by an internal investigation.
The report said some 60 Fatah officials and members of the security forces should be held accountable for the quick collapse of Fatah forces in five days of fighting with Hamas last month.
However, neither Abbas nor his aides mentioned the names of those being held responsible by the committee and did not release the report itself. Since the fall of Gaza, some 40 members of the security services in Gaza have resigned, been fired or sent into retirement. The most prominent is former Gaza strongman Mohammed Dahlan, who resigned Thursday as national security adviser, citing health reasons.
In a news conference, Abbas aide Nabil Amr said the report found many flaws in the security services, including random hiring and lack of motivation and leadership.
“There was no field leadership … There were only individual initiatives,” he said of the performance of the Abbas-allied forces in Gaza.
Abbas said Friday that the committee’s recommendations would be implemented. “Whoever had shortcomings will get his punishment, and whoever did his duty will be rewarded, so that we can turn a new page in our institutions,” he said.
Palestinian leaders have repeatedly pledged to reform the bloated security services, but have made little progress.