The Palestinian Authority on Saturday banned Palestinian activists from participating in a video conference in Ramallah to demand reforms and elections for the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO).
PA security officers arrested two prominent activists, Omar Assaf and Bashar al-Takrouri, and confiscated the mobile phone of another activist, Jamileh Abed. Several journalists who came to cover the event were briefly detained by the officers.
The crackdown is seen as part of the PA leadership’s efforts to silence its critics and prevent gatherings organized by opposition groups and figures.
The conference was organized by the Palestinian Popular Conference, a group that describes itself as a voice for 14 million Palestinians around the world, including in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
According to the PPC, the purpose of the gathering was to call for reconstructing the PLO by holding elections for its legislative body, the Palestinian National Council (PNC).