Palestinian Affairs

Top Fatah Figure Sues Palestinian President Abbas in Hague Over Intimidation, Corruption

A top member of Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah faction is suing the Palestinian Authority (PA) president at the International Criminal Court (ICC) for intimidation and corruption.

Mohammed Dahlan – a member of the Fatah Central Committee and the movement’s onetime strongman in Gaza – is seeking reparations for property he claims was confiscated from him. He is also demanding assurances he will not be harmed if he returns to PA territory.

Yedioth Ahronoth reported in its print edition Wednesday that Dahlan had hired an Israeli law firm to file the complaint. The firm is run by Zaki Kamal, deputy president of the Israel Bar Association, and his son Kamal Kamal.

Dahlan’s accusations were extensive and the brief does not mince words

Dahlan accused the Palestinian leader of “tyrannical behavior the utter corruption of which, along with the corruption of his family, is damaging to the Palestinian people and the authority’s institutions,” the report said… “I and my family have for a long time been subjected to terror and harassment, persecution, arrests, defamation, threats to life and damage to property,” Dahlan wrote. “The campaign against me knows no moral or legal limits, nor even national boundaries.”…

“The activity against me is conclusive proof not only of the alarming level of corruption and tyranny on the part of Abu Mazen [Abbas], but also that, in practice, there is no discipline and consideration of the law, to trial, or the legislative institutes in the authority,” he wrote. “In practice, government in the authority is a tyrannical rule of one person — Mr. Mahmoud Abbas — and all of the authority’s institutes, its budgets and international relations are nothing other than means available to Abbas and his family, and their financial, political and personal interests.”

The charges will in some quarters have a ring of credibility. Dahlan’s description of Abbas comports with analysis from a range of Palestinian affairs watchers..

Dahlan, who once headed the Palestinian internal security services in Gaza, was expelled from the Strip after the territory was taken over by Hamas in a bloody 2007 battle. He subsequently fell out out with Fatah’s West Bank leadership, and now splits his time between Dubai and Europe.

The former strongmen’s feud with Abbas goes back years. In 2011 he railed against Abbas on Egyptian TV (subtitled by MEMRI), saying his removal from the Palestinian territories was “null and avoid” and advising the PA leader to “shove it.” That was by comparison mild to some other accusations he’s made:

 

PA officials dismissed the lawsuit calling it “…accusations that are a mix of well-known personal interests on the part of the accuser and false accusations.”

[Photo: FRANCE 24 English / Youtube]