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PA and Fatah personalities
Issa Karake
PA and Fatah personalities
Mahmoud Abbas
Abbas Zaki
Yasser Arafat
PA Mufti Muhammad Hussein
Ibrahim Mudayris
Mahmoud Al-Habbash
Ahmed Qurei
Salam Fayyad
Issa Karake
Jibril Rajoub
Issa Karake
Issa Karake - Director of the PLO Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs and former PA Minister of Prisoners' Affairs.
In 2014, Abbas changed the Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs, subordinate to the PA government, into the Supreme National Authority of Prisoners' Affairs, subordinate to the PLO. This was done to evade pressure from international donors over the PA's payment of salaries to terrorist prisoners. Instead of paying terrorist salaries out of the PA general budget, to which international donors send their funding, the new PLO institution pays the salaries and is responsible for prisoners' affairs. Karake was appointed head of the new Authority of Prisoners' Affairs.
Karake remains a member of the PA Parliament.
PA minister: Israel implements policy of slowly executing prisoners 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Nov. 26, 2013
     “[PA] Minister of Prisoners’ [Affairs] Issa Karake said that the Israeli government is implementing a policy of slow execution against the sick prisoners, by delaying their release and the treatments they require.”
PA Minister Karake honors released murderer 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Nov. 17, 2013
Caption: “Karake honors prisoner Ismat Mansour during the presentation of his novel.”
     “The Deir Jarir Youth Council in the Ramallah and El-Bireh district presented ‘The Barbed Wire Fence,’ a novel by released prisoner Ismat Mansour who sat in the occupation prisons for 20 years and was released in the first phase [of 104 released pre-Oslo prisoners].
To discuss the novel and present it, the council hosted [PA] Minister of Prisoners’ [Affairs Issa Karake], [and] released male and female prisoners attended [the event]… Karake said that the novel, which was written in prison, is an innovative and unique literary work that sheds light on the prisoners’ cultural and philosophical experience… at the end of the conference, Karake honored prisoner Ismat Mansour.”

Note: Ismat Mansour – assisted in the kidnapping and murder of Israeli civilian Haim Mizrahi (Oct. 23, 1993). He was serving 22 years in prison, but was released in October 2013 as one of 104 terrorists whom Israel agreed to release to fulfill the PA's precondition for renewing negotiations.

PA minister visits released terrorists, conveys to them greetings from Abbas 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Nov. 12, 2013
PA Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake
visiting released prisoner Abd Al-Rahman Al-Haj
     “[PA] Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake announced that the prisoners’ issue is constantly and continuously on the government’s table, due to the great interest in this issue and to the search for every possibility to assist them as fighters who sacrificed for their homeland and country… Karake noted that in recent years the Ministry of Prisoners’ [Affairs], in cooperation with all institutions, enacted four implementing regulations of the prisoners’ law, and that the fifth regulation relating to the released prisoners is in the final stages of discussion by the Palestinian government... Karake related to a number of other proposals for regulations, which he hopes will be duly approved. They relate to university education in prisons, fertility services for released prisoners, salary completion and the establishment of a national fund to support prisoners and their families, alongside a regulation for deceased released prisoners. Karake spoke during his visits to a number of released prisoners, during which he delivered President [Abbas]’s Grant to them following their release as part of the second phase, and he also conveyed President Mahmoud Abbas’ and Prime Minister Dr. Rami Hamdallah’s greetings.”

For the complete translation with terrorist descriptions and PMW explanatory notes, click "full article."
Song educating children to carry weapons performed at PA ceremony honoring released terrorists 
Source: Official PA TV Live, Nov. 4, 2013
Palestine Live TV broadcast a rally held in honor of released terrorists from Jenin, which was attended by many PA officials. A large sign announced that the event was held under the auspices of Abbas.
During the event, a singer sang songs praising the prisoners, including “Mother, marry me off,” which promotes educating children to carry weapons, while the audience danced and lifted the released prisoners up on their shoulders:

Lyrics of “Mother, marry me off:
"My country is Arab, filled with freedom,
Oh mother, marry me off to a Palestinian girl.
Mother, a daughter of the land, with a happy nature,
who will raise my children on carrying the rifle."

Note: Click "full article" below to view a longer transcript of the event. The "full article" also includes descriptions of the released terrorists who were being honored.
PA Minister defends PA giving money to terrorists, they are "heroes" 
Source: Official PA TV Live, Nov. 4, 2013
PA Minister of Prisoners' Affairs Issa Karake, at a rally under the auspices of Mahmoud Abbas in honor of released terrorists from Jenin:
     "The Europeans want their money that comes to us to remain clean -- not to go to families of those they claim to be terrorists. [They] need to renounce this occupation mentality. These [prisoners] are heroes, fedayyeen (self-sacrificing fighters), and fighters who fought so that we could live in dignity... These heroes, whom you are applauding, must live in dignity, so that we will continue to hold our heads high. We appreciate the people of the revolution and are proud of them."
Click to view video
Click to view bulletin


Senior PA official celebrates “magnificent” terrorist “heroes returning from captivity” 
Source: Official PA TV Live, Nov. 3, 2013
PA TV broadcast a rally in Surif, Hebron in honor of released prisoners Ziyad Ghneimat, Mustafa Ghneimat, and Najeh Muqbil.
Abbas Zaki: "How great and magnificent what you have done, oh heroes returning from captivity. How great are these men of great stature, for you sieged the prison guard. How great are you, for you knew that you are potential Martyrs (Shahids), yet your will was stronger than any [Israeli] decision and any outcome... We are the ones who planted the spirit of defiance in this nation, and we have been the school [to teach] the culture of resistance... We took up arms, and with cascades of blood we inscribed [in the books of history] victory after victory. And today, through diplomacy, by winning the world over on our side, and by removing Israel from public opinion (i.e., as a legitimate state), we will administer the poison to them drop by drop… I congratulate the Hebron District on [the return] of this group of select men. And when I mention Mustafa, Ziyad, and Najeh, I add also the great eagle Fakhri Barghouti –33 years in prison, and here he is with us! …
I would like now to recall the commander of the operation, [Muhammad] Abu Shadi Al-Tous, whom we look up to with respect. The reason they are postponing [the release of] this commander is that he angered them more by having been the commander of the operation. We also salute [his wife] Um Shadi, and every front, and [we salute] all those beloved heroes, the pioneers, the free men, the fighters, like these heroes (points to the three released prisoners)… We say to Israel: Die in your rage. Go to your cemeteries and recite over your dead whatever you recite. Here they are [who Israel said] 'have blood on their hands' (i.e., murderers); here they are [back] among their own people: fighters, knights, free men!”

For the full transcript and a description of the terrorists, click "full article."
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Abbas welcomes 21 murderers released from prison 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Oct. 30, 2013
In August 2013, Israel agreed to release 104 Palestinian prisoners, which was the PA's precondition for renewing peace talks. The following is the PA celebrating the release of 21 of them, all of whom were convicted murderers.
[Abbas is shown embracing murderer Issa Abd Rabbo and all 21 murderers]
PA TV announcer: "Here they are embracing President Mahmoud Abbas after long years behind the bars of the occupation... Here are President Mahmoud Abbas and the released prisoners waving to the audience..."
Minister of Prisoners' Affairs Issa Karake: "Even though the prisoners were released in the middle of the night, each one of you, the prisoners, is a sun lighting up Palestine's sky..."
PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas: "We welcome our heroic brothers who come from behind bars to the world of freedom. We congratulate ourselves and we congratulate all of you in this great celebration that unifies and returns our sons to us... There will be no agreement [with Israel] as long as there is one prisoner behind bars."
Click to view video
Click to view bulletin

Note: Issa Abd Rabbo - serving two life sentences for killing two Israeli university students, Ron Levi and Revital Seri, who were hiking south of Jerusalem on Oct. 22, 1984. At gun point he tied them up, put bags over their heads and then shot and murdered both. He was released in October 2013 as one of 104 terrorists whom Israel agreed to release to fulfill the PA's precondition for renewing negotiations.
Release of prisoners by Israel is a national achievement that strengthens the peace process 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Oct. 23, 2013
In August 2013, Israel agreed to release 104 Palestinian prisoners in stages, which was the PA's precondition for renewing negotiations. PA TV program Topic of the Day discusses the second group of prisoners to be released by Israel, all 26 of whom were serving life sentences for murder:
Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake: “I hope this phase will be a quality phase and that it will indeed take place, because I’m still worried. I don’t trust the Israelis. Everyday there’s incitement against the releases, everyday there are despicable racist voices. I hope it will take place, and that the remaining phases will be completed, because I think this is a great achievement, a national achievement and an achievement for the Palestinian leadership and for President Mahmoud Abbas. Furthermore, he shattered all of the terminology and criteria [for who should be released] used by Israel, who, from the occupation’s beginning, used the term ‘blood on their hands,’ and handed down life sentences to these fighters who are in prison. This gives the Palestinian people hope, and it also sends a message to the international community, to the Israelis and the Americans – that the detainees’ freedom enhances and strengthens the peace process, if they truly want a true and genuine peace with our Palestinian people.”
PA Minister honors imprisoned Fatah terrorist with visit to his family 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 22, 2013
     “[PA Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa] Karake visited the family of prisoner Najeh Muqbil, one the veteran prisoners, in the Al-Aroub refugee camp. He has been in prison for 24 years and is sentenced to a life sentence.”

Note: Najeh Muqbil - Fatah terrorist. He and an accomplice murdered one in 1990. The article mistakenly writes that Muqbil was sentenced life in prison, when in fact he was sentenced to 38 years.
Fatah: Family of murderer “has great national credit” 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 11, 2013
     “[PA] Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake declared yesterday evening [Oct. 10, 2013] that the [national] leadership and the PA are sparing no efforts to gain the release of all our prisoners from occupation prisons. Minister Karake spoke by telephone during a solidarity vigil organized by the central branch of Fatah in Khan Yunis, with the mother of brave prisoners Diya and Muhammad Zakariya Al-Agha, [who lives] in Khan Yunis in the Southern Gaza Strip. [The vigil was held] to mark the beginning of Diya’s 22nd year behind bars in Israeli detention centers. Minister Karake said he is very impressed whenever the brave prisoners’ mother, fighter Um Diya Al-Agha, speaks. We consider [her] to be the mother of all prisoners because she is always present at solidarity events for our prisoners... Secretary of the central Khan Yunis [Fatah] branch, Dr. Haidar Al-Qudra said in his speech: ‘It is a great honor for us all to meet today in a home that, as everyone has witnessed, has contributed a great deal and continues to contribute, [to be] in the lion’s den of a fighter-family that has great national credit by virtue of Martyrs (Shahids), wounded and fighter-prisoners.’ [...] At the end of the solidarity vigil [Fatah’s] central Khan Yunis branch bestowed the family of the two prisoners honorary gifts: a picture of the two brave prisoners, Diya and Muhammad Al-Agha and a plaque of ‘resolve’ for the fighter-sister, mother of two prisoners.”

Note: Diya Zakariya Shaker Al-Agha "Al-Faluji" - serving a life sentence for beating Israeli citizen Amatzia Ben Haim to death with a shovel in the Gaza Strip (Oct. 11, 1992).
Muhammad Zakariya Al-Agha – PMW has not been able to obtain precise information about the crime and sentence of this prisoner.

PA: Palestinian prisoners undergo torture, medical experiments, and neglect 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 10, 2013
Headline: “A popular conference calls on the international community and its leadership to intervene in order to save the sick prisoners and end their catastrophic condition”
     “At the end of discussions at a popular conference held yesterday [Oct. 9, 2013] in El-Bireh, [participants said that they] lay responsibility on the Israeli occupation government for the sick prisoners’ health and for any ramifications [resulting] from additional Martyrs (Shahids) falling among them…
The President [Rami Hamdallah]’s representative, Fatah Central Committee member and Commissioner for Mobilization and Organization Mahmoud Al-Aloul, and [PA] Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake spoke at the conference …
Al-Aloul noted that there are more than 150 prisoners sick with chronic and serious diseases due to the unhygienic conditions in which they live, over-crowding in cells that contributes to the spread of contagious diseases, the poor quality of food and drink, their exposure to torture and means of psychological pressure, and the use of prisoners as guinea pigs by prison doctors, [all] part of a systematic policy…
Karake blamed Israel of slowly killing the prisoners. He noted that most of the sick [prisoners] became sick inside the prisons, after being imprisoned, and [that they] did not receive medical examinations or treatment.
Karake said that Israel is a ‘criminal’ state that uses organized terror against the prisoners in its prisons.”
PA Minister of Prisoners' Affairs honors released prisoner, killer of 1  
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 10, 2013
     “The Fatah movement’s Salfit branch, in cooperation with the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs, the Prisoners’ Club and the Bruqin municipality, held a large rally in the town of Bruqin to honor the [Salfit] District’s released prisoners… Minister of Prisoners’ [Affairs] Issa Karake noted that President Mahmoud Abbas ascribes great importance to the prisoner issue …
At the end of the rally… the released prisoners received plaques as a token.”

Text beneath the photo: “Karake while honoring prisoner Mustafa Al-Haj at the rally.”

Note: Mustafa Al-Haj murdered Frederick Rosenfeld while he was hiking near the city of Ariel in the West Bank (June 17, 1989). He was released in August 2013 as one of 104 terrorists whom Israel agreed to release to fulfill the PA's precondition for renewing negotiations.
PA Minister visits family of terrorist involved in multiple shooting attacks 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 7, 2013
     “[Among] the families visited by [Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs] Issa Karake was the family of prisoner Ahmad Barghouti who is sentenced to 13 life sentences and another 50 years.”

Note: Ahmad Barghouti – was commander of Fatah’s military wing, the Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades, in the Ramallah region. He is serving 13 life sentences and another 50 years for sending terrorists to shooting attacks in which 12 people were killed. Among these attacks was the terror attack in the Seafood Market restaurant in Tel Aviv (March, 5, 2002) in which 3 people were killed.
Israeli legislation allowing prisoners to be force-fed is “intentional murder” 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 22, 2013
Headline: “[PA Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa] Karake: ‘A silent crime is being committed inside the occupation’s prisons against the eight striking prisoners’”
     “[PA Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa] Karake warned of Israel’s attempts to legislate a law allowing the use of force towards prisoners, forcing them to break their [hunger] strike and forcing them to eat, which constitutes an intentional crime of murder.”
PA Minister Karake visits released terrorist prisoner Al-Natsheh 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 20, 2013
     "[PA] Minister of Prisoners' Affairs Issa Karake said that the [Palestinian] leadership is paying a great deal of attention [to the prisoners' issue] and actively dealing with the Israeli side, for the urgent release of the sick prisoners... During his visit to released prisoners Khaled Asakra from Bethlehem, who was released recently and sat in [different] prisons for 22 years, and Jamil Al-Natsheh from Hebron, who sat in [different] prisons for 21 years, Karake said that the release of the sick [prisoners] has become a priority, especially in light of the fact that there are sick [prisoners] in the prisons whose lives are in danger: [Prisoners] sick with cancer, malignant tumors, heart diseases, paralysis and disabilities."
Caption under photo (which did not show the released terrorist): "Karake greets released prisoner Khaled Asakra and prisoner Al-Taj."
Click to view bulletin

Note: Jamil Al-Natsheh - member of Hamas' military wing, arrested in 1992 for involvement in terror attacks carried out in Hebron. He was sentenced to 21 years in prison and released in 2013.
Muhammad Al-Taj - was sentenced to 14 years in prison. He was released due to medical reasons after serving two thirds of his prison term. It has not been possible to verify the crime for which Al-Taj was imprisoned.
PA Minister presents gifts to released prisoners who were involved in terror attacks 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 16, 2013
Headline: “Karake: ‘We look forward to the release of all prisoners, with no exceptions, as a political, national, and legal right’”
     “[PA Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa] Karake spoke while on a trip in the Nabus, Jenin, and Ramallah districts to greet the 26 released prisoners, during which reception ceremonies and celebrations [for the prisoners] were held. Accompanying Karake were Head of the Prisoners' Club Qadura Fares, [released] veteran prisoners and a delegation from the Ministry [of Prisoners’ Affairs] and the Prisoners’ Club, as well as Jenin District Governor Talal Dweikat, Fatah Secretary in Jenin Ata Abu Rmeileh, Member of Palestinian Parliament Jamal Hweil, Nablus District Deputy Governor Anan Al-Atireh and [released] veteran prisoners Othman Musleh, Mustafa Qar'ush, Sa’id Al-Ataba, Hassan Salameh, Muhannad Jaradat, and others... Karake and the accompanying delegation presented gifts to the released prisoners in appreciation.”

Caption beneath the photo: “Karake yesterday with one of the released prisoners in Jenin and Nablus.”
The man with Minister Karake in the photo is Mustafa Al-Haj, who murdered Frederick Rosenfeld while he was hiking near the city of Ariel in the West Bank (June 17, 1989). Al-Haj was released in August 2013 as one of 104 terrorists whom Israel agreed to release to fulfill the PA's precondition for renewing negotiations.

Note: For descriptions of the released prisoners who were honored by the PA, click "full article" below.
PA Minister: Israel “kills anyone” who expresses “solidarity” with Palestinians 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 4, 2013
In Turkey, senior political officials attended a communal meal to break the Ramadan fast with senior PA officials. Among the PA officials were: PA Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake, PA Mufti of Jerusalem and the Palestinian Territories Sheikh Muhammad Hussein, Palestinian Ambassador to Turkey Nabil Ma’arouf, Israeli Arab MP Muhammad Barakeh, and Chairman of the Prisoners’ Club Qadura Fares. Released Palestinian prisoners who were deported to Turkey also attended. The following are excerpts of the conversation at the meal, reported in the official PA daily:
     “[PA] Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs [Issa Karake] praised the sacrifice of the Marmara ship Martyrs (Shahids) who fell defending Palestine, and he wished the wounded a speedy recovery. In addition, he noted that the Israeli occupation kills anyone who tries to express solidarity with our Palestinian people. He also referred to the suffering of the prisoners in the occupation’s prisons and noted that there is no prisoner in the world who serves a 30 year prison term, except for the Palestinian prisoner…
[PA] Ambassador [to Turkey Nabil] Ma’arouf noted that one of the main issues that concerns us is the prisoners’ issue, because 4,700 prisoners are still wasting away in the Israeli occupation’s prisons, and most spend over half of their lives inside a detention center. That doubles their families’ suffering.” From WAFA, official PA news agency

Note: Marmara refers to the Turkish ship “MV Mavi Marmara” that tried to break the Israeli blockade on the Gaza Strip in May 2010 – The “Gaza Freedom Flotilla.” On board the ship were activists and among them terrorists who attacked Israeli soldiers with weapons when they boarded the ship. During the ensuing fight nine of the terrorists on board were killed.
PA Minister on prisoner release: It “opens a door of hope” that other prisoners will be released 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 29, 2013
In July 2013, US Secretary of State John Kerry made efforts to renew peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians. Palestinian negotiators demanded that Israel release Palestinian prisoners as a precondition for renewing peace talks, and Israel agreed to release 104 prisoners. PA Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake responds to Israel’s decision to release Palestinian prisoners:
Headline: “Karake: ‘The release of the veteran prisoners is a great achievement that will strengthen peace’”
     “[PA Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa] Karake considered Israel’s agreeing to release prisoners imprisoned since before [the] Oslo [Accords were signed], most of whom are accused by Israel of involvement in the murder of Israelis, as breaking the Israeli habit that always prevented the release of prisoners accused of murdering Israelis. He added: ‘If the Israeli government will not [try some kind of] manipulation, the release of these prisoners could be considered a step forward and a wonderful thing, which will open a door of hope to the additional prisoners with regard to their release.”
PA Minister places convicted terrorist at top of list on PA TV program 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, July 29, 2013
PA TV program In a Fighter’s Home:
PA TV host: “Our question, Mr. Minister [of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake], is: ‘What does fighter Muhammad Lutfi Abu Lutfi symbolize for you, seeing that you put his name at the top of our program’s list in this important month (i.e., Ramadan)?'”

Note: Muhammad Lutfi Abu Lutfi was sentenced to 20 years in prison in 1968 for terrorist activity.
PMW has been unable to verify the specific nature his crimes.
PA Minister visits family of terrorist who murdered 2 people 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 28, 2013
     “Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs, Issa Karake demanded from the European Union that it freeze commercial and economical agreements with Israel because it [Israel] continues to violate the rights of prisoners in the prisons and breaks international humanitarian laws…
Karake noted that many violations against prisoners contradict international conventions, like the fact that detention of children, administrative detentions, detention of envoys, medical neglect, visitation and education prevention etc. are all continued.
Karake said this during a visit he made in honor of Ramadan to several families of prisoners from the Jenin district. These [visits] are part of a program developed by the Ministry [of Prisoners’ Affairs] for the month of Ramadan, under the heading ‘We will not forget you’…
In the village of Bir Al-Basha, Karake and his entourage visited the family of sick prisoner Muhammad Ghawadreh, who is sentenced to three life sentences and 30 years. He is suffering from vision problems… and is in danger of losing his eyesight after receiving an accidental injection five years ago.”

Note: Muhammad Ghawadreh is serving three life sentences for the murder of 2 Israelis (June, 2003), and other offenses.
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