32 East Jerusalem Men Arrested for Joining PA Security Forces
JNS.org – Thirty-two residents of east Jerusalem were arrested by Israeli police in a raid Sunday night on suspicion of joining and serving in the Palestinian armed forces.
The 32 men are all residents of east Jerusalem and some receive Israeli government benefits, but they are not Israeli citizens.
The police stated that they had seized tens of thousands of shekels in cash and foreign currency, ammunition, Palestinian police badges, uniforms, military equipment as well as photos and certification documents from the suspects’ homes.
The arrests followed a covert investigation by the Israel Police’s central investigative unit. The men are accused of working for the Palestinian security forces in violation of Section 7 of the Implementation Law, which prohibits enlistment in the Palestinian Authority’s armed forces. If found guilty, the suspects could face a minimum of seven years in prison.
All the detainees were taken for questioning at the central investigative unit and were to be brought in for remand hearings later in the day.
Palestinian Authority Governor for Jerusalem Adnan Gheith was arrested earlier on Sunday on suspicion of involvement in the abduction of an American citizen who aided the sale of land to Jews.
It is believed that last month, Gheith contacted Issam Akel, an Arab American who holds an Israeli ID and is a legal resident of Jerusalem, after the PA began suspecting Akel had aided the sale of a house in the city to Jews, something Ramallah deems illegal.
The two then met in the presence of several Palestinian security officers and Akel was abducted shortly after the meeting.