- Title: Palestinians enraged by activist's death march on Abbas compound
- Date: 24th June 2021
- Summary: PROTEST IN PROGRESS VARIOUS OF PROTESTERS CALLING ON PALESTINIAN PRESIDENT MAHMOUD ABBAS TO LEAVE HIS POSITION (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) PALESTINIAN PROTESTER, JAMAL ZAID, SAYING: "We are protesting to condemn (what happened) and we will continue protesting because we are fed up. Enough is enough, we are all under death threats, threats of arrests and for our homes to be raided. We are all exposed to these disgusting security forces."
- Embargoed: 8th July 2021 14:42
- Keywords: Hebron Nizar Banat Palestinians West Bank critic security forces
- Location: NEAR HEBRON, HEBRON AND RAMALLAH, UNKNOWN LOCATION, WEST BANK
- City: NEAR HEBRON, HEBRON AND RAMALLAH, UNKNOWN LOCATION, WEST BANK
- Country: Palestinian Territories
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace,Middle East
- Reuters ID: LVA003EIRGF9J
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Hundreds of angry Palestinians marched towards Mahmoud Abbas's presidential compound in the occupied West Bank on Thursday (June 24) to demand he resign over the death of a well-known activist following his arrest by Palestinian Authority security forces.
Demonstrators held posters of Nizar Banat as they came under tear gas fire by dozens of PA forces in riot gear trying to prevent the group from reaching President Abbas's headquarters, in the centre of the West Bank city of Ramallah.
According to Banat's relatives, security forces severely beat him during his arrest overnight in the southern West Bank city of Hebron. The PA-appointed governor of the city, Jibrin Al-Bakri, said Banat had died when his health deteriorated following his arrest, without elaborating on the cause.
Banat, 43, was a social activist who had accused Abbas's PA of corruption, including over a short-lived COVID-19 vaccine exchange with Israel this month and Abbas's postponement of a long-delayed election in May. Banat had registered as a parliamentary candidate for that contest.
A spokesman for the Palestinian Authority did not respond to a request for comment on the arrest and accusations that its forces had beat Banat.
Following U.N. demands for an inquiry into Banat's death, Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh, an Abbas appointee, ordered the formation of an investigation committee that he said would include the PA's Independent Commission for Human Rights (ICHR).
But in an apparent sign of public distrust in the PA's inquiry, ICHR director general Ammar Dwaik later said ICHR would not be involved in the PA investigation committee.
(Production: Yosri Al-Jamal, Ali Sawafta, Mohamad Torokman, Mustafa Abu Ganeyeh)
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