Israel Detains PA Minister for Jerusalem, Governor for City

Arrest campaign seen targeting senior Palestinian officials and other leaders

Israeli police officer in east Jerusalem (photo credit: ISRAEL POLICE)
Israeli police officer in east Jerusalem
(photo credit: ISRAEL POLICE)
For the second time in three months, Israeli security forces have arrested the Palestinian Authority’s minister for Jerusalem affairs, Fadi al-Hadmi. The arrest came on September 25 during an early-morning raid at Hadmi’s home in East Jerusalem.
Shortly before, Israeli police raided the home of the PA’s governor for Jerusalem, Adnan Ghaith, to deliver a writ of summons.
“A force of the Israeli police and intelligence services barged into my home while I was visiting my father in the hospital,” Ghaith told The Media Line. “An hour later or in conjunction, they arrested Hadmi.”
Ghaith said Wednesday’s escalation was nothing new and came as part of what he called Israel’s “barbarian” treatment of Palestinians in the city.
“Due to Israeli laws, our activities in Jerusalem are considered as interfering with Israeli sovereignty there, which violates all international understandings and resolutions regarding Jerusalem,” he said.
He added, however, that in his view, Israel normally doesn’t wait for justifications for such actions, especially in the city.
“Israel won’t allow any [official] Palestinian presence in Jerusalem, and we [the PA] represent the Palestinians there,” he said.
Mickey Rosenfeld, foreign media spokesman for the Israel Police, confirmed to The Media Line that Hadmi was in police custody for questioning about his activities.
Mahmoud Majdalani, the PA’s minister of social affairs, told The Media Line that Israel was targeting him as well, calling it an effort at “ethnic cleansing” and “imposing a fait accompli” that Jerusalem is Israeli.
“Well, we say no to that,” Majdalani said.
He added that Israel did not want him to visit Palestinian hospitals or other Palestinian bodies in the city.
“We are practicing our duties toward our people in Jerusalem, as in any other Palestinian city,” he stated.
Ibrahim Melhem, spokesperson for the PA government, stressed to The Media Line that targeting Palestinian leaders and top officials reflected Israel’s “miserable policy” in Jerusalem and its failure at “Judaizing” the city.
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