With Palestinian pitted against Palestinian in an increasingly bloody power struggle, abductions are spreading.
In extraordinary scenes, one kidnapping was filmed today. An Associated Press TV news cameraman was a witness as armed men seized a Hamas official from a building in Nablus. Gunmen linked to the rival Fatah group say they were behind a wave of kidnappings today in the West Bank city.
The anarchy is no longer confined to Gaza.
With some two dozen lives lost there since Thursday, the Palestinian cabinet has met in special session. The prime minister repeated a call for calm.
Ismail Haniyeh of Hamas also urged President Mahmoud Abbas to pull gunmen from his Fatah faction off the streets and remove roadblocks around Gaza City.
But Fatah claims Hamas-led executive forces are the major element in stoking tensions.
A Hamas government spokesman claims it has been trying to stop the bloodshed.
“Sometimes we have succeeded in doing this,” said Ghazi Hamad.
“But we are surprised and shocked by some groups who are not involved in keeping the situation calm and quiet.”
There was little evidence of calm and quiet today, with fresh fighting and a bomb blast damaging the home of a bodyguard to senior Fatah figure Mohammed Dahlan.
With violence raging, talks to form a Palestinian unity government remain on hold.