Israel has arrested a Palestinian Authority lawmaker over Hamas "activities," an NGO and officials said Wednesday, bringing to 13 the number of Palestinian deputies detained by the Jewish state.
Ahmed Atoun, a PA lawmaker from Jerusalem since 1996 affiliated with Hamas, was arrested at dawn, according to the Palestinian Prisoners Club NGO.
Banned from Jerusalem by Israel, he has recently lived in Ramallah.
His arrest brings to 13 the number of PA parliament members detained by Israel.
The parliament, or Palestinian Legislative Council, includes 132 members, though it has not sat since 2007, when Hamas and the Palestinian Authority clashed in a near-civil war over control of the Gaza Strip.
Hamas won polls in 2006, eventually sparking the conflict that led to the Islamist group's control of the strip.
Beyond Atoun, 14 other Palestinians were also arrested, the NGO said, including Fayez Abu Warda, a Hamas spokesman in Judea and Samaria.
Questioned about Atoun and Warda, Israeli authorities confirmed two people were arrested over "Hamas activities" in the Ramallah area and Hevron, but did not provide further details.
Israel and Palestinian Arab terrorists in Gaza have fought three wars since 2008 and Israeli authorities fear Hamas operatives will seek to mount attacks in Judea and Samaria.
Prominent jailed Palestinian Arab terrorist Marwan Barghouti, who polls show would win
PA elections, is calling for a widespread prisoners' hunger strike.
The call is being made in connection with Arab prisoners day, which will be marked on April 17.
Barghouti is jailed over his role in the violent second intifada.