The resignation of Justice Minister Nahed Al-Reyes came following sharp differences with PA chairman Yasser Arafat, who insists on maintaining a tight
grip on the judicial system and prosecution to avoid a thorough investigation into allegations of corruption among the top brass of the PA
In an interview in his Gaza City home, Nahed Al-Reyes said that he no longer had authority over state prosecutors.
''The prosecution should be under the control of the Justice Ministry, according to the law," he said, declining to elaborate. ''My
resignation comes as a protest against the incorrect position of the prosecution."
The second minister, Nabil Qassis, submitted his resignation after being appointed as president of Bir Zeit University.
Arafat has in recent months issued a number of "presidential" decrees giving him expanded powers over the ministry. One decree calls for making PA
courts subordinate to the Higher Judicial Council, a newly established body that reports directly to Arafat. The Land Authority, which was previously
part of the Justice Ministry, is now an independent body headed by former Justice Minister and Arafat loyalist Freih Abu Medien.
Palestinians seeking reform last month have set fire to police stations, kidnapped the police chief and taken officials and four French aid workers
and also an American, a Briton and an Irish church worker hostage (ATSNN: West Bank Hostages
On Monday, a Palestinian policeman hurled two hand grenades into a jail cell inside a Palestinian security compound in Gaza City holding prisoners
accused of collaborating with Israel, wounding seven, one died of his wounds. Gunmen killed two men accused of being informants for Israel in their
hospital beds on Gaza City's largest hospital. (www.reuters.com...
" target="_blank" class="postlink" rel="nofollow">Reuters)
On Thursday, Pro-Arafat Militants Open Fire at Fatah Conference of more than 70 Fatah officials
in the West Bank city of Nablus, claiming that
the conference was an anti-Arafat conspiracy. (ABC news
On Friday, August 6, Palestinian gunmen broke up a news conference being held Gaza Strip town of Beit Hanun, forcing three Palestinian cabinet
ministers to stop speaking and leave town
Some Palestinian officials blame the unrest in Gaza Strip on a former security chief in the Gaza Strip, Mohammed Dahlan
. Dahlan is a leading
figure in the campaign to reform the Palestinian Authority.
In a press conference held in Amman in July Mohammed Dahlan accused Arafat of "sitting on a pile of Palestinian corpses". Dahlan was quoted in
interviews as saying that if Arafat fails to carry out real political reforms by August 10, there will be mass demonstrations against his rule in
the Gaza Strip
If Arafat does not carry out real reforms within the PA by August 10, 30,000 Palestinians will demonstrate in the streets of Gaza
, Dahlan said.
"What has happened in Gaza is an expression of our demands for reform," he said, in an apparent reference to three weeks of protests in the Strip
against decisions made by Arafat.
All of the funds that foreign nations have donated to the Palestinian Authority, a total of $5 billion,
"have gone down the drain, and we
don't know to where."
Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
Al-Hayat reported Arafat and Dahlan spoke on the phone in an effort to mend fences, adding the two agreed to meet Monday.
What distinguishes Mohammed Dahlan
from others is that he believes it makes sense to stop the war on Israel, reach a peace agreement, and
get a Palestinian state
Senior Israeli officials said Dahlan was in touch with Shin Bet director Avi Dichter and head of the Defense Ministry's political-security division
[edit on 8-8-2004 by Riwka]