The Palestinian Authority on Saturday arrested businessman Saleh Abu Mayala from Hebron after his return from President Trump’s initiated conference in Manama, Bahrain, the Associated Press reported. A PA official confirmed the arrest but did not explain why it had been carried out.
Abu Mayala was part of a small group of Arab businessmen from the PA who were led by Ashraf Jabari, who stands out for his good relationship with Israel and his Jewish neighbors in the settlements.
Al-Jabari, 45, is a former member of Palestinian intelligence, whose life is in danger because the PA has accused him of treason.
US envoy Jason Greenblatt last month congratulated al-Jabri for announcing he would go to Bahrain, tweeting, “Thank you Ashraf Jabari for your open-minded approach to our upcoming econ workshop. Couldnt agree more w you.”
Al-Jabari, for his part, on June 5 told BuzzFeed: “We will take what achieves the interests of the Palestinian people and leave behind what does not agree with the Palestinian people,. No one is forcing us to do anything.”
The AP quoted a third participant, who spoke on condition of anonymity, saying that he and the other businessmen were in “great danger,” and have been threatened by the government.
Meanwhile, PLO Secretary General Saeb Erekat on Friday condemned Trump’s peace envoy Jason Greenblatt’s statement, suggesting he preferred to call Israeli settlements “neighborhoods and cities.” Erekat, meeting with American academics, called Greenblatt’s statement “an incitement against all those who attended the recent Manama workshop for Middle East peace.”
Of course he did.