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2 Palestinian officials, members of Hamas, abducted

Story Highlights

• Five Hamas members also kidnapped in Gaza, party sources say
• Violence mounts between president's Fatah party, Hamas government
• President, Hamas government prime minister agree to withdraw militants
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RAMALLAH, West Bank (CNN) -- An Interior Ministry official and the deputy mayor of Nablus, both members of Hamas, were kidnapped on Saturday, according to Palestinian security sources.

Ihab Sulayman, an official of the Hamas-controlled Interior Ministry's Ramallah branch, and Deputy Mayor Mahdi al-Hanbali were abducted in the West Bank, but sources could not provide further details.

Hamas sources said five members were also kidnapped in Gaza.

Kidnappings and other violent acts are up as the Palestinian factional conflict between the Hamas-led government and Fatah-aligned President Mahmoud Abbas escalates.

Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniya, who heads the Hamas government, and Abbas met Friday and agreed to withdraw armed militants from the streets, Haniya said.

They agreed to form an independent judicial committee to investigate the rash of violence between the two factions and appealed for calm, the prime minister said in a news conference.

Abbas did not appear at the news conference. (Full story)

CNN's Enas Muthaffar contributed to this report.



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