PA security forces accused of assaulting radical group

Dozens of supporters of pan-Islamic Hizb ut-Tahrir (Party of Liberation) are rounded up, accuse security forces of creating "fortresses."

PA police training in Hebron 311 Reu (photo credit: Nayef Hashlamoun / Reuters)
PA police training in Hebron 311 Reu
(photo credit: Nayef Hashlamoun / Reuters)
Palestinian Authority security forces in the West Bank on Saturday detained dozens of supporters of the radical Hizb ut-Tahrir (Party of Liberation).
The party accused PA security forces of assaulting many of its supporters during attempts to hold rallies held in major Palestinian cities marking the anniversary of the collapse of the Islamic Caliphate system.
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Hizb ut-Tahrir is a global pan-Islamic political group that seeks to unify all Muslim countries as an Islamic state, or Caliphate ruled by Islamic law, known as “Sharia.”
The group has a few thousand supporters in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, where both the PA and Hamas have been cracking down on them.
According to the party, the PA security forces turned Ramallah and other cities into “military fortresses” to prevent its supporters from holding the rallies.
Checkpoints set up by PA policemen at the entrances to Ramallah stopped hundreds of Hiz ut-Tahrir supporters from entering the city to participate in a rally in the city center.
At least 100 activists were detained in Ramallah alone, while others were beaten, the party added.
In one incident, PA policemen fired into the air to disperse dozens of party supporters at the southern entrance to Ramallah, eyewitnesses said.
In Hebron, clashes erupted between Hizb ut-Tahrir supporters and PA security forces, a spokesman for the party announced. He said several people were wounded and taken to an area hospital.
Similar protests and confrontations also erupted in Nablus, Tulkarm and Kalkilya, the spokesman said.