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Palestinian President Abbas Reportedly Was KGB Agent; Ramallah Dismisses Report as 'Slander'

According to Israeli Channel 1, document retrieved from USSR archives show Abbas, codenamed 'Krotov,' worked by Russian agency in 1980s. Palestinian officials dismiss the report and call it yet another attempt by Israel to discredit the PA president.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas reportedly served as a KGB agent in the 1980s, Channel 1 reported. According to archival documents obtained by the news outlet, Abbas, whose code name was "Krotov" (Mole), worked with the Soviet secret police and security agency in Damascus in 1983.
Palestinian officials dismissed the report, calling it yet another attempt by Israel and other countries to discredit Abbas. "There's a clear trend of attempting to damage Abu Mazen by various elements, including Israel," Mohammed al-Madani, a member of the Fatah's central committee told Haaretz, referring to Abbas by his nickname. "This is another attempt to slander him," he added.
According to al-Madani, the relationship between the Soviet Union and the Palestine Liberation Organization began in the late 1960s, when Yasser Arafat visited Moscow. The Soviet Union supplied the Palestinians with firearms, and Abbas, as a member of the PLO executive committee, was the liaison to the Russians.
Ahmad Majdalani, a member of the PLO executive committee and a close adviser to the Palestinian president, told Haaretz that Abbas had no need for a covert channel of communication with the Soviets since he was the head of the Palestinian-Soviet Friendship Foundation and as such was the de-facto liaison between the PLO and the Soviet Union.
Abbas didn't respond officially to the report. However, sources close to him noted that Arab states and the U.S. have recently been waging a campaign to pressure him to reinstate former Fatah official Mohammed Dahlan. Abbas has rejected what he termed a gross interference in Palestinians' internal affairs.

Haaretz

read more: http://www.haaretz.com/middle-east-news/1.740861Schermata 2016 09 07 alle 22.09.26

Video of the Week New Clashes Erupt Between Israeli Security Forces, Muslim Worshippers

Temple Mount temporarily closed to Jewish visitors after clashes with police




The Temple Mount was temporarily closed to Jewish visitors on Wednesday at the order of Jerusalem District Commander Yoram Halevy after Jews broke visitation rules at the holy site, police said. The Jewish visitors were expelled from the compound for bringing sacred books to the Mount and trying to pray there. After one of the individuals was cautioned, another took out a holy book, and the group was expelled. Meanwhile, renewed clashes erupted between protesters and Israeli security forces near the Lion's Gate in the Old City, where police used stun grenades against the demonstrators. A regular dynamic has developed involving clashes between Palestinians and Israel Police over the past several days near the Lion's Gate. Dozens of Palestinians are present at the site on a regular basis, urging devotion to the Al-Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount and condemning Israel. During Muslim prayer times, particularly the midday and nighttime prayers, hundreds and sometimes even thousands have been gathering there.

There have been outbreaks of violence during these periods, including stone-throwing or physical confrontations with the police. In most of these incidents, the police have been using stun grenades and sponge-tipped bullets to disperse the crowds. In a number of cases, journalists in the area have also suffered violence at the hands of the police. On Tuesday, Hassan Shaalan, a reporter for the Ynet news website, was struck by a policeman even after he identified himself as a member of the press. A group of Jerusalem-based journalists released a statement of condemnation over the incident and called on the police to permit reporters to do their jobs. The Jerusalem Police responded: "This involved an incident that took place in the course of violent disturbances of the peace that occurred in Jerusalem while the police were acting to remove the demonstrators from the street after some of them refused to vacate. The forces working on the scene are under constant threat to their lives. http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/1.802141

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