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PLO condemns deportation of Palestinian MP by Israel

Aug. 20, 2014 10:55 P.M. (Updated: Aug. 22, 2014 10:01 A.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- The Palestine Liberation Organization on Wednesday condemned the Israeli order to exile Palestinian member of parliament Khalida Jarrar from her home in Ramallah, as further details emerged of deportation order she received in a pre-dawn raid earlier in the day.

PLO Executive Committee Member Saeb Erekat on Wednesday said in a statement that the order for Jarrar, who is a representative of the leftist Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, to be confined to a specific area in Jericho was "yet another manifestation of Israel's widespread and systematic attack against the Palestinian civilian population."

He added that the order is in "clear contravention of Israel's obligation under international law and treaties to respect the fundamental human rights of individuals, including the rights to self-determination, freedom of movement, privacy, and protection of the family."

Erekat noted that the order, which was delivered in a pre-dawn raid on her home by Israeli soldiers and gave her 24 hours to leave, "effectively amounts to attempted forcible transfer, unlawful confinement and persecution, all of which are crimes punishable under the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court and under the universal jurisdiction provisions of the majority of States."

Erekat condemned the move and noted that 36 other members of the Palestine Legislative Council, the equivalent of a parliament, were being held in Israeli jails.

Prisoner rights group Ad-Dameer said in a statement on Wednesday that Jarrar -- who is a board member of the organization -- was told that she would be confined to Jericho for the next six months because she was a "threat to the security of the area."

The group said that the Israeli army did not give any explanation of the kind of threat she posed.

The group noted in the statement that the raid also pointed to the fact that the Palestinian Authority was complicit in her arrest, as any raid on areas in Area A -- the approximately 20 percent of the West Bank technically under full Palestinian control as a result of the Oslo Accords -- had to be taken with their coordination.

"By allowing Israeli occupying forces to enter Ramallah means that in effect the so-called 'security co-ordination' between Palestinian Authority security forces and Israeli occupying forces allowed for the expulsion of an elected representative of the Palestinian people, an elected representative who has continuously called for an end to such 'coordination,'" the group said.

Elected to the Palestinian parliament in 2006, the group noted that Jarrar has been banned from traveling outside of the occupied Palestinian territory by Israeli authorities since 1998, except for one occasion in which she traveled to Jordan for medical treatment in 2010.

The group also noted that Israeli forces have previously forcibly deported sitting members of the Palestinian parliament, including Mohammad Abu Teer, Ahmad Atoun and Mohammad Totah, as well as Minister of Jerusalem Affairs Khalid Abu Arafeh in 2010.

All of the officials were deported from their homes in Jerusalem and Ramallah, the group said, noting that soon after the deportation they were arrested and held without charge or trial by the military.
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