Israel Arrests Former Commander Of Military Wing Of Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah Faction
Israeli security forces arrested a former commander of the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, the military arm of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’ ruling Fatah faction. Zakariya Zubeidi was detained Wednesday on suspicion of “serious and current terrorist activities.” Once considered a “symbol of the Second Intifada”—the period from 2000-2005 characterized by Palestinian suicide bombings in Israeli public spaces—Zubeidi was pardoned by Jerusalem after allegedly renouncing violence. In December 2011, however, the decision was reversed without explanation and Zubeidi has since been on Israel’s wanted list. For years, he managed to evade capture by remaining in PA custody in Ramallah, before ultimately being released in 2017. Meanwhile, 22 other people were arrested in the crackdown including the top Palestinian official in Jerusalem, Adnan Gheith, who is suspected of fraud as well as violating a law that limits PA activity in the holy city that Israel considers its united capital.