Israeli Ynet news reported Thursday that Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, is planning to investigate a video tape showing the Palestinian Authority’s head of bureau trying to solicit sexual relations, the report includes corruption and financial scandals. Yet, the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank still believes that the whole issue was fabricated by Israel.
The scandal was first reported by the Israeli Jerusalem Post newspaper and then was reported by Israel’s Channel 10 TV, as the TV station broadcast the tape that was recorded in 2008, and an interview with Shabana.
The tape reportedly shows Rafiq Husseini, head of Abbas’ office, in an intimate situation with his secretary. It is believed that Husseini tried to entice a woman who asked to work at his office into being sexually active with him.
The Israeli report also showed Fahmi Shabaneh, an official at the Palestinian General Intelligence Service, accusing figures close to President Mahmoud Abbas and the late president, Yasser Arafat, of corruption that is estimated by millions of US Dollars.
In the tape, Al Husseini reportedly says that Arafat was corrupt, and that he was “the biggest liar, who did not love his people, and his people never loved him”.
According the report, he said that the sons of Mahmoud Abbas, Tareq and Yasser, are also corrupt doing their business on the expense of the Palestinians and their cause.
President Abbas is likely to call for an investigation into the issue upon his return from his visit to Japan.
The Ynet News said that some sources at the Palestinian Authority are stating that Shabaneh is enjoying Israel’s support.
Shabaneh told the Ynet that he wants to expose what he described as “huge corruption issues” and that he is trying to transfer documents he is in position off to an Arab state to verify their authenticity.
He added that the claims of obtaining Israel’s protection are false and that he was personally appointed by Abbas as the head of the security division of the General Intelligence, and was promised by Abbas to be appointed as the deputy governor of Jerusalem.
Mohmoud Al Habash, the Palestinian Minister of Religious Affairs, confirmed reports about forming a commission of inquiry, and added that Al Husseini agreed to the committee after the tape was released.
Al Husseini said that is a political issue fabricated by Israel as the country is trying to provoke the Palestinian Authority into returning to the negotiations table without freezing settlement activities.