Three Palestinian MPs, who have been stripped off their diplomatic immunity by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, have sought protection at the headquarters of the International Committee of the Red Cross in Ramallah today.
The three Fatah MPs are Najat Abubaker, Shami Alshami and Jamal Altirawi.
Mahmoud Abbas had earlier issued a decision to strip the three off their diplomatic immunity in addition to the former Fatah leader and MP Mohammed Dahlan and Gaza-based Fatah MP Nasser Jumaa.
Ramallah: PA security forces surround ICRC offices where 4 Palestinian legislators are protesting Abbas's decision to remove their immunity.
— Khaled Abu Toameh (@KhaledAbuToameh) December 18, 2016
By doing so, Abbas paved the road to arrest and interrogate the three Fatah MPs, accused of amassing wealth and illegal weapons.
A fourth Fatah activist, Jihad Tumila, who was also sacked from Fatah earlier, reportedly joined the MPs at the ICRC headquarters.
Local sources said the MPs sought protection at the ICRC headquarters after they learned about a plan by the PA security forces to arrest them.
ثلاثة نواب من مفصولين من حركة فتح يشرعون باعتصام في مقر الصليب الاحمر الدولي في رام الله pic.twitter.com/9Re9uZlQKF
— موقع أمامة الإخباري (@omamahwest) December 18, 2016
(Translation: Three Fatah MPs seek protection at the ICRC headquarters following stripping them off their diplomatic immunity).
Some analysts suggest that Abbas’s decision to strip the five off their immunity was a result of an ongoing internal conflict with his rival Muhammad Dahlan. The latter is a former Fatah leader, who has publicly criticized Abbas, and who is blamed for ‘losing the Gaza Strip’ to the Hamas movement in 2007.
— شبكة فلسطين للأنباء (@shfanews_net) December 18, 2016
(Translation: Abbas security forces besiege the headquarters of the ICRC where Fatah MPs sought protection)
Latest news reports indicate that Palestinian Authority forces have stormed the ICRC headquarters and forced the Fatah MPs out.
(SAMA, PC, Social Media)