Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas arrived in the West Bank city of Jenin on Saturday evening in the second visit since he assumed office in 2005. Abbas went to Jenin to lay the cornerstone for a new hospital. He was also scheduled to meet with residents and leaders of the city during his brief visit. Abbas rarely visits Palestinian cities and villages in the West Bank. He usually leaves his office and home in Ramallah only when he wants to travel abroad.
Abbas ordered a clampdown in the city and nearby villages after unidentified gunmen on May 1 opened fire at the home of then-Jenin governor Kadoura Musa, who died shortly afterward of a heart attack. The security crackdown revealed that many PA policemen, security officers and Fatah gangsters had been responsible for scenes of anarchy and lawlessness for many years in Jenin. At least 150 suspects have since been rounded up and sent to the PA’s central prison in Jericho.