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NEWS: Ongoing Palestinian Crisis

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posted on Aug, 19 2004 @ 12:17 PM
Things are getting worse and more complicated within Palestinian Authority. PA security forces refuse receiving Qurei's orders

Qurei's administration, like that of his predecessor Mahmoud Abbas, has been hobbled by Arafat's refusal to let it make decisions. PM Qurei has also pressed Arafat to move ahead on reforms starting with the security, as demanded by the international community.


In a speech on Wednesday, Arafat admitted that the PA had made mistakes and vowed to fight corruption


"It's true there were wrongs and unacceptable practices by me and many others. Even the prophets commit mistakes," Arafat said.

"There were wrong practices in some institutions, and some misused their positions. There were not enough efforts to strengthen the rule of law, the independence of the judicial institutions ... Be we have begun measures to solve this."

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But most legislators said they don't believe he is serious. The United States is also "unimpressed" with Palestinian Authority Chairman Arafat's admissions on Wednesday and Palestinian leader, stated that Arafat has regularly violated promises.

And he has rebuffed the latest challenge to his authority:

Arafat refused to sign anti-corruption legislation demanded by lawmakers.

Arafat refuses to sign anti-corruption legislation

in a "stormy and tense" follow-up meeting late Wednesday, Arafat told pro-reform lawmakers "that his speech ... was enough and that there is no need for any signatures," said Azmi Shouabi, one of the meeting's participants.

Shouabi said the lawmakers had agreed to meet with Arafat one more time before submitting a report to parliament next week.

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The Speaker of the Palestinian Legislative Council, Rouhi Fatouh, said on Thursday that the Palestinian Authority security forces were refusing to deal with PA Prime Minister Ahmed Qurei, saying they receive orders only from Yasser Arafat.

PA security forces refuse receiving Qurei's orders

"The Palestinian security forces are refusing to obey the orders of the Prime Minister," Fatouh told journalists in Ramallah. "I call on President Arafat to issue a presidential decree with clear instructions to the security forces to fulfill the orders of the Prime Minister. This is the only way to change things."

"Arafat's speech was just an attempt to buy more time," said Hassan Khraisheh, a deputy PLC speaker and one of Arafat's harshest critics. "The Palestinian people are waiting for real measures to implement reforms and not a diagnosis of the situation which is known to everyone."

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PLC deputy Speaker Hassan Khreisha, declared that a parliamentary panel would be meeting soon with President Yasser Arafat to request he sign a presidential decree over reform within the Palestinian Authority.

Al Bawaba

"If the president approves the decrees, that would be a positive thing but if not; the decrees will be discussed in parliament and a serious decision will need to be taken," conveyed Khreisha.

Khreisha added that the panel has not succeeded in achieving anything with Arafat so far; however he did express optimism vis--vis Arafat signing the decrees.

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Palestinian Legislator Hanan Ashrawi said Arafat must put his words into action.

But Palestinian Legislator Abdel Jawad Saleh said real changes would take place only when the Palestinians rise against their leadership.

Although Arafat does not appear to be in danger of being overthrown, the public criticism has reached an unprecedented level.

Related Discussion Threads:
NEWS: The Palestinian Crisis - Palestinian Ministers Resign
NEWS: PNC Declared a State of Emergency in the Gaza Strip

[edit on 8-19-2004 by Valhall]


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