Hevron businessman who attended Bahrain workshop arrested

Palestinian Authority arrests Hevron businessman who attended Bahrain workshop.

AFP,

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Palestinian Authority (PA) policemen on Saturday arrested a businessman for taking part in this week's US-led peace conference in Bahrain, which the PA boycotted, a Palestinian security source said.

They detained Salah Abu Mayala, a businessman from the city of Hevron, the source told AFP on condition of anonymity.

The family of Abu Mayala, who is in his 70s and has health problems, said they had no information on his detention.

The security source said the PA had decided to arrest PA Arabs found to have taken part in the conference, where US President Donald Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner launched a long-awaited
Middle East initiative.

Contacted by AFP, the United States embassy in Jerusalem declined to comment.

The PA leadership, which has boycotted the White House, insists a political solution to the conflict
with Israel must come before economic issues.

But at least three PA Arabs took part in the Manama conference, including Abu Mayala and fellow Hevronite businessman Ashraf Jabari.

Jabari, who is little known among PA Arabs but has spoken before Jews, has said he traveled to Bahrain in the hope of boosting the PA's economy.

Interviewed by the BBC at the conference, Jabari appeared to be sweating and repeatedly declined to discuss the PA's position.

"We are not coming here to talk about politics. Politics are for the Palestinian Authority," he said through a translator.

A spokesman for PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas on Saturday slammed the conference.

"The abject failure of the Manama workshop... is a clear message to Mr. Trump and his administration that the policy of threats and intimidation no longer work," said Nabil Abu Rudeineh.




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