December 13, alJazeera.net
Ismail Haniya was due to be travelling for a month after he left Gaza on November 28, but growing violence in the Palestinian territories between supporters of Hamas and Fatah has forced an early return.
In the latest incident the judge of an Islamic tribunal was shot dead by unidentified men in the southern
Bassam al-Farah was a prominent member of the Hamas movement, which blamed Fatah for the latest killing.
"The seekers of the coup in Fatah bear the responsibility for all actions of chaos taking place in the Palestinian streets," Mushir al-Masri, a Hamas member of parliament, said.
Speaking to reporters in the Sudanese capital,
"We want to assure you that words such as 'civil war' don't exist in our dictionary. They don't exist in our make-up, in our culture," he said.
"We don't have time for internal feuds. We will protect the national unity of the Palestinian people and we will thwart any attempt to instigate an inter-Palestinian struggle."
However, one sign of the growing uncertainty and deteriorating security situation was the demonstration outside the parliament building in
Hundreds of protesters had earlier gathered in the square to protest at the killing of three young children of a Fatah-allied Palestinian intelligence officer two days ago.
Nour Odeh, Al Jazeera’s correspondent in
The crowd marched into the PLC where speeches were made to current members, all saying the only way to achieve national security was through national unity.
Hamas and Fatah have adopted entrenched positions of late. The Fatah-led PLO executive committee has recommended calling early elections.
These calls have been rejected by Hamas, which says the executive committee does not have the authority to make such recommendations.
Meanwhile on the ground, the cycle of killing continues. Al Jazeera's David Chater joined a patrol of the Hames-led Executive Force in Khan Younis.
The group has had its numbers thinned by targeted killings by
Its commander is on that country's wanted list and he told Al Jazeera that his group's mission is to protect the Palestinian people from chaos.
He has already been in a shooting match with rival Palestinian factions and, although he says he hopes he is not in that situation again, he said that if he is "forced to stop an outlaw, I will do it again and I won't regret it".