Many militiamen belonging to Abbas's ruling Fatah party are operating openly together with Islamic Jihad in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
Islamic Jihad operative Luai Sa'di, who was killed in an IDF operation in Tulkarm earlier this week, had been working closely with Fatah gunmen.
Sa'di's cohort, Majed al-Ashkar, a leader in Fatah's Aksa Martyrs Brigades, was killed in the same IDF raid.
Sources in Tulkarm said the two had formed a joint Fatah-Islamic Jihad cell responsible for a series of attacks on Israel over the past 18 months.
In Jenin and Nablus as well, Fatah and Islamic Jihad members are often seen roaming the streets together.
On Wednesday, masked gunmen belonging to Fatah and Islamic Jihad held a joint press conference in Gaza City to claim responsibility for the Hadera attack.
According to an Abbas aide, dozens of Fatah gunmen have "defected" to Islamic Jihad in protest against the PA's failure to pay them salaries and give them high ranks in the security forces.
"It's not a matter of ideology, but money," he explained. "And the money is coming from Damascus and Hizballah."
Click here to subscribe to our email list and receive a daily summary of our top blog stories.
Israel Size Maps
PLO Quote Sheets
Learn to Read Hebrew FAST