Lawmaker continues sit-in, says rights are ‘restricted’ by PA

NABLUS (Ma’an) — Palestinian lawmaker Najat Abu Bakir on Saturday continued a sit-in strike at the headquarters of the Palestinian Legislative Council for the tenth day in a row, saying that human rights in Palestine were “severely bleeding due to restrictions on freedoms.”The Fatah-affiliated lawmaker in a statement Saturday said she refused to leave the Palestinian parliamentary building until her case was “solved under Palestinian law which protects her and grants her immunity.”Political controversy initially erupted last week when Palestinian Authority security forces reportedly attempted to detain Abu Bakir for casting corruption charges against a Palestinian minister.Abu Bakir began her sit-in after the PA attorney-general summoned her for interrogation on the matter on Feb. 25. She called again on Saturday for the attorney-general to annul the summons, adding that she planned to move forward with legal procedures.Abu Bakir has maintained that the official’s decision to bring her for interrogation was “illegal” due to her status as a lawmaker.The lawmaker also slammed PA leadership for putting the security of Palestinian civil society “in danger.”“Most trade unions have been dissolved and others have been crippled, resulting in instability and fear amongst civil servants,” Abu Bakir said.“The current situation in Palestine is a result of the domination of the executive branch over other authorities. This should ring a bell as it puts social security in danger,” Abu Bakir said.The lawmaker referred directly to strike launched by Palestinian teachers mid-February in order receive higher salaries as pledged to them by the PA in a 2013 agreement that was never fulfilled.The strike has exposed a major divide in Palestinian society, with a number of teachers detained by PA security forces as well as several small attacks on teachers in recent days.

(Source / 05.03.2016)

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