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Authorities Shut Down Offices of Reputed Palestinian Moderate

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Jerusalem police on Thursday shut down the press office of Dr. Sari Nusseibeh, a Palestinian intellectual and reputed moderate.

The closure, for two years, was backed by a court order obtained by the Israel Defense Force central command.

An IDF spokesman claimed Nusseibeh, a writer and philosopher, was an instigator of the Palestinian uprising and a paymaster for Al Fatah, the fighting arm of the Palestine Liberation Organization controlled by Yasir Arafat.

Despite the severity of the charges and demands from right-wing circles, the military authorities shied away from arresting Nusseibeh.

They reportedly feared his arrest would trigger international repercussions, including strong diplomatic protests from the United States, because of Nusseibeh’s reputation as one of the moderate political leaders of the Palestinian community in East Jerusalem.

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