Hamas members of the Palestinian Parliament in Gaza have approved a new bill "to implement Koranic punishments," including hand amputation, crucifixion, corporal punishment and execution. Drinking, owning or producing wine is punished by 40 lashes, while drinking in public adds three months' imprisonment. Several laws are directed against Hamas's Palestinian rivals, including a law intended to inhibit non-Hamas negotiators by sentencing to death anyone who was "appointed to negotiate with a foreign government on a Palestinian issue and negotiated against Palestinians' interest."
The following is the description as it appears today on the Al Arabiya website:
Headline: Hamas approves law of punishment by lashes, amputating hands, crucifying, and execution -- in order to implement the Islamic Shari'ah law.
Hamas members of the Palestinian Legislative Council approved in its meeting in Gaza a new bill proposed by the Hamas who have a majority in the Legislative Council, whose purpose is "to implement Koranic punishments." The newspaper Al Hayat of London reported on Dec. 24, 2008, that this step is seen as unprecedented, and has brought criticism and concern from human rights organizations in the Gaza Strip, especially as this law includes punishments by lashes, cutting off of hands, crucifixion, and execution...
The language of the law proposes "primary and secondary" laws. Primary laws include: "Koranic laws, blood revenge, lashes, crucifixion, and execution ..."
The text stresses: "These punishments will not be canceled or pardoned ... except if pardoned by the victim himself...
Section 59 of the law establishes that "punishment of death will be enacted on any Palestinian who intentionally does one of the following: Raised a weapon against Palestine on behalf of the enemy during war, was appointed to negotiate with a foreign government on a Palestinian issue and negotiated against Palestinians' interest, performed a hostile action against a foreign country in a way that endangers Palestine in war or in harming political relations, served a foreign army in time of war, advised or helped soldiers to enlist in this army, weakened the spirit or the force of resistance of the people, or spied against Palestine especially during war."
The punishment of lashes appears in many sections of the law. Section 84 states that: "Whoever drinks wine, owns or produces wine will be punished with 40 lashes if he is Muslim, and anyone who drinks wine, or angers another person [with wine], or causes him distress when drinking wine in a public place, or goes to a public place while drunk, will be punished with no less than 40 lashes and imprisonment for the minimum of three months."
[Al-Arabiya, Dec. 24, 2008]