Israel bans PLO from East Jerusalem
The Israeli government has introduced a new law to prevent the Palestine Liberation Organisation and the Palestinian National Authority from conducting any political activities, or creating any political or government institutions in East Jerusalem. The government is ready to punish anyone who breaks the law with a fine of US$33,000, or a one-year prison sentence.
The serious implications of the new law were manifest in the refusal to allow the Palestinian Minister of Economy and Industry, Ahmed Qrei', into Jerusalem to participate in an economic conference on July 20.
Meanwhile, Israeli border guards and security service agents raided several Palestinian offices and institutions in East Jerusalem on the pretext that they were fronts for the Palestinian Front for the Liberation of Palestine.
Orient House, headquarters of the Palestinian delegation for the peace talks, released a statement which said that the new Israeli law contradicts the spirit of the agreements signed with the PLO and violates the Israeli guarantees sent in a secret letter to the late Norwegian Foreign Minister, Jeurgenn Holst, not to interfere in the activities of Palestinian institutions in East Jerusalem.
[Reprinted from the Jerusalem Times.]