Hamas security officers, front, stand guard as Egyptian soldiers are posted in the Egyptian side of the Rafah border crossing, as seen from Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip, May 26, 2015. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
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A local Salafist leader was shot dead in Gaza City Tuesday during a confrontation with Hamas security forces as tensions mounted between the Strip's Islamist rulers and its extremist opponents.The violence came as Hamas police and security forces stepped up measures against militants belonging to Islamist extremist groups, some of whom are known as Salafists.Since last summer, when Israel and Hamas fought a deadly 50-day war in and around Gaza, there have been growing signs of internal unrest between Hamas security forces and extremist splinter groups.Since August, a spate of explosions has targeted officials and buildings affiliated with Hamas, the rival Fatah movement and international organizations.Although few have been claimed, they are believed to be the work of radical Salafists unafraid to challenge Hamas.According to Aymenn Jawad al-Tamimi from the Philadelphia-based Middle East Forum on Islamist movements, the group is just one of a number of pro-ISIS entities operating within "a very fragmented Salafi jihadi movement in Gaza".
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