Palestinian Authority security members threaten to dissent after Blinken-Abbas meeting

Palestinian Authority security members threaten to dissent after Blinken-Abbas meeting
Unrest brews in the West Bank after the US secretary of state met Palestinian president in Ramallah on Sunday while Israel continues its military offensive on Gaza. Meanwhile, Israel's West Bank ramp-up killed 14 Palestinians in the last 48 hours.
5 min read
West Bank
07 November, 2023
Palestinians continue to protest in West Bank cities as Israeli forces have killed 151 across occupied West Bank since 7 October. [Qassam Muaddi /TNA]

Dozens of Palestinian security forces' members will declare 'disobedience' unless Palestinian president Abbas declares 'total confrontation' with Israel, a statement made public through Telegram by an alleged group calling itself 'The Sons Of Abu Jandal' said on Monday, 6 November. 

The alleged group claimed to be formed of Palestinian security servicemen, naming itself after Yousef Rihaneh, known as 'Abu Jandal. A Palestinian security officer joined Palestinian fighters in the Jenin refugee camp during the battle of Jenin in 2002 and was killed after leading the battle.

Protest Ramallah / Qassam Muaddi
Daily night protests have been held in Ramallah in solidarity with Gaza since 7 October.
[Qassam Muaddi/TNA]

"For far too long, we have endured the orders given to us while we were ripped apart, every day and every minute, at the sight of women and children torn to pieces [by Israeli bombings]", said the statement.

"We declare that as of today, the Palestinian leadership has the historical responsibility of declaring full confrontation with the occupation", it read. "If within 24 hours President Abu Mazen [Abbas] does not declare full confrontation and dissociates himself from the declarations of the criminal Blinken, then we will have no obedience or allegiance to any security apparatus." 

The statement came a day after Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas met the US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken in Ramallah on Sunday. During the visit, Abbas said that the Palestinian Authority would return to administrate the Gaza Strip only as part of a "comprehensive political solution" that would include the establishment of a Palestinian state, Palestinian sources said.

Abbas laid his conditions for his administration's takeover of the administration in Gaza during his meeting with the US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken during his visit to Ramallah. According to sources, Blinken told Abbas that the Palestinian Authority has to play a role in the administration of Gaza following the current war.

Abbas's position echoed previous comments by Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh last week. At the same time, Israel continues the bombing of Gaza for the fourth week as its troops push deeper into the Strip, engaged by Palestinian fighters.

On Sunday, hundreds of Palestinians marched in Ramallah, protesting Blinken's visit. Protesters held the US administration, including US President Biden and Blinken himself, directly responsible for the killing of more than 10,000 Palestinians, mostly civilians, including more than 4,000 children, according to the Palestinian health ministry.

Meanwhile, Palestinian sources affirmed on Sunday that the PA refused to receive the Palestinian customs money from Israel after Israel had deducted the Gaza Strip's share.

On Monday, Prime Minister Shtayyeh said that Israel's decision to deduct some 140 million dollars from Palestinian customs money was "a political decision aimed at separating Gaza from the West Bank".

Meanwhile, Israeli forces continue to ramp up their raids on Palestinian cities and towns in the occupied West Bank, killing more than 151 Palestinians since 7 October, raising the number of Palestinians killed by Israeli forces in the West Bank since the beginning of the year to 350.

The largest spike in Palestinians killed in the West Bank since 7 October started on Sunday, as Israeli forces killed 14 Palestinians in the West Bank in the last 48 hours, eight of them since Monday.

On Monday, Israeli forces killed four Palestinians in a raid on Tulkarm, northwest of the West Bank. The four men were Saed Balaawi and Qasem Rajab, both aged 20, Jihad Shehaadeh, 22, and Ezedin Awad, 25

Local sources told TNA that an Israeli force infiltrated Tulkarm in a car with Palestinian licence plates and opened fire on a car where the men were driving, killing all four instantly. Israeli media quoted Israeli forces saying that the four men were fighters in the Tulkarm Brigade.

Also on Monday, Israeli forces killed 21-year-old Mahmoud Al-Atrash in the town of Halhoul, near Hebron.

"Mahmoud loved life and had many expectations", Al-Atrash's father told Palestinian media on Monday. "He worked as a plumber and was finishing to build his own house, hoping to form a family."

"He left his house for work when protests and shootings were taking place in the town", his uncle said. "He was shot, but he had no business in any trouble", he added.

Meanwhile, Israeli forces dispersed protests in solidarity with Gaza at the entrance of the village of Beit Fajar, south of Bethlehem in the southern West Bank, using live fire and killing 18-year-old Yousef Taqatqah.

Medical sources at the Beit Jala Hospital in Bethlehem said that the teenager was killed by a live bullet in the head. He will buried on Tuesday in his home village of Beit Fajar.

Israeli forces have also arrested dozens of Palestinians since Sunday, including Palestinian activist and former detainee 23-year-old Ahed Tamimi.

The Palestinian Prisoners' Club said in a statement on Tuesday that Israeli forces have arrested 2200 Palestinians in the West Bank since 7 October.

The number of Palestinian prisoners currently stands at 7,000 Palestinians, including an unprecedented peak of 2,700 detainees without charges under the Administrative Detention system.