A Palestinian Authority court on Monday sentenced a top PA security officer to three-and-a-half years in prison after finding him guilty of assaulting and threatening a family in Ramallah. The court also ordered the dismissal of the officer, Said Ahmed, from the PA security forces.
Ahmed worked as head of the bureau of Tayeb Abdel Rahim, the secretary-general of the PA presidency.
Abdel Rahim is considered one of the most influential PA officials in the West Bank.
Ahmed was arrested three months ago after he forced his way into the family’s house together with three gunmen after midnight. The senior PA official claimed the family’s 13-year-old son had threatened his own son.
“When I opened the door, I saw Ahmed and three armed men,” recalled Um Baha, the mother of the boy who was targeted. “They threatened my daughter with a handgun as Ahmed started searching for my son inside the house. My son escaped to his room, but Ahmed chased him and tried to break the door. Then he opened fire inside the house.”
Neighbors who rushed to the scene tried to talk Ahmed and his friends into leaving the house, but to no avail.
PA policemen also arrived at the scene and tried to negotiate with Ahmed to surrender. In response, Ahmed and his friends opened fire at the policemen from inside the house.
Ahmed surrendered four hours later when his boss, Abdel Rahim, arrived at the scene and asked him to walk out.
No one was hurt in the incident, which drew sharp condemnations from Palestinians in Ramallah.
Gen. Adnan Damiri, spokesman for the PA security forces, told the Ramallah- based Wattan TV that the court’s verdict shows that no Palestinian official is above the law.