The Palestinian Authority claimed on Monday that it had succeeded in thwarting a deal to sell land to Jews in the Bethlehem area. According to an announcement issued by the PA, General Intelligence operatives headed by Majed Faraj arrested four Palestinians on suspicion of planning to sell land to Jews.
According to the statement, the deal was torpedoed following intelligence information obtained by Faraj's people. The identities of the "suspects" who were arrested were not disclosed. In addition, no details were provided regarding the identity of the buyers, but it was noted that the transaction amounted to 600 dunams, on land claimed to be located on land belonging to the village of Nahalin. A security source in General Intelligence said that "the case has been transferred to the General Prosecutor's Office to complete the necessary legal steps."
The Palestinians regard the sale of land to Jews as an act of treason. The suspects are usually accused of "transferring ownership of Palestinian lands to hostile elements."
This is not the first time that the PA has announced the thwarting of real estate transactions, as well as arrests and prosecutions. In the past, there have been a number of fatwas forbidding Muslims to sell land to Jews, and calling for a boycott of people involved in such transactions. In addition, there have been cases in the past in which land dealers and realtors were murdered on suspicion of being directly or indirectly involved in real estate transactions with Jews in Judea, Samaria and East Jerusalem.
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