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Exiled Fatah leader Dahlan 'set up UAE-backed terrorist training camp in Egypt's Sinai' Open in fullscreen

The New Arab

Exiled Fatah leader Dahlan 'set up UAE-backed terrorist training camp in Egypt's Sinai'

Dahlan has revealed the details of a power-sharing deal with Hamas [Getty]

Date of publication: 27 July, 2017

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Exiled former Fatah strongman Mohammed Dahlan has reportedly set up a terrorist training camp in Egypt's Sinai peninsula to carry out attacks in the Gaza Strip and other countries.

Exiled former Fatah strongman Mohammed Dahlan has reportedly set up a terrorist training camp in Egypt's Sinai peninsula to carry out attacks in the Gaza Strip and other countries in the region, pro-government Turkish daily Yeni Safak has reported.

Dahlan, who recently revealed details of a power-sharing deal with former arch rivals Hamas, allegedly established the camp over a year ago to train eight thousand militants to "occupy" Gaza and launch missile attacks into Israel, the newspaper said on Wednesday.

The plan, which is reportedly funded by the United Arab Emirates, would "create the perception" that the Islamic State group had taken control of the Hamas-run Gaza Strip and "lay the foundation" for Egypt to militarily intervene and take control of the besieged Palestinian enclave.

The report said the militants would also be deployed to Turkey, Qatar, mainland Egypt, Libya, Sudan and the Philippines to carry out terror attacks and assassinate government officials.

It added that Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan has bankrolled the project with $700 million and that UAE-based news channels would provide positive media coverage for the plan.

This week, Dahlan for the first time revealed the details of a power-sharing deal with former arch rivals Hamas, saying the Gaza border could be opened imminently as a result of the agreement.

In June, reports emerged of a strategic alliance between Dahlan, 55, and Hamas officials in Gaza, with several meetings facilitated by Egyptian officials in Cairo.

Dahlan told The Associated Press in an exclusive interview that the Egypt-Gaza border is expected to open by late August.

Dahlan said his personal relationship with Hamas's new Prime Minister Yahya Sinwar helped forge the once unthinkable alliance.

As Gaza's security chief following the Oslo Accords in the 1990s, Dahlan led a brutal crackdown on Hamas members.

He was accused of commanding fighters during bitter factional fighting following Hamas' electoral victory in 2006 over the long-dominant Fatah party, which was ousted from Gaza in 2007.

He has since fallen out with Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas and lives in self-imposed exile in the UAE, where he is considered a potential successor to the 82-year-old Palestinian president.

The multi-millionaire has built close ties with the Emirati elite and Egypt, and has numerous business interests in the region.

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