Sex Scandal Rocks Palestinian Authority
As if the Palestinian Authority did not have enough problems, a sex scandal has rocked the struggling Palestinian government in the West Bank. On Tuesday night, Israel’s Channel 10 aired a video of one of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’ senior advisors engaging in sexual activities with a female candidate applying to work in his office.
Fahmi Shabaneh, a former top Palestinian Authority anti-corruption official, had issued Abbas an ultimatum to dismiss corrupt officials in his office within two weeks or he would expose cases of corruption that “would seriously embarrass the PA and even harm its relations with Arab and Muslim countries as well as donors.”
Shabaneh eventually delivered on his threat, giving Channel 10 video footage of Secretary General to President Mahmoud Abbas, Rafik Al Hussein, laying nude in bed with a female woman in Ramallah.
PA officials have already rejected the report, accusing Israel of launching a smear campaign to embarrass Abbas. In a published statement Wednesday morning, the PA said that Shabaneh’s allegations were false and part of an Israeli conspiracy to undermine Abbas because of his refusal to launch unconditional negotiations with the Jewish state.
The PA also refuted Shabaneh’s credibility, saying he was arrested three months ago on corruption charges and that he had tried to blackmail senior PA officials to obtain the post of deputy governor of Jerusalem.