While Palestinians struggle against a brutal Israeli occupation in the West Bank, and a suffocating blockade in Gaza, they also have to struggle against another level of injustice, coming from the Palestinian Authority (PA) itself. Not only does the Ramallah leadership engage in political fights with Hamas at the expense of ordinary Palestinians in Gaza, they also restrict free speech and the right to dissent in the territories they control. The latest example was the arrest of prominent Palestinian human rights activist Issa Amro, long hounded by Israeli forces, because he criticized the arrests of journalists by the Palestinian Authority. Congressman Mark Pocan (D-WI) slammed the detention, saying the PA was moving in an “unfortunate direction” by cracking down on free speech, and we couldn’t agree more with Pocan. If this is the leadership that’s supposed to be leading the Palestinian struggle for freedom, they should really start by valuing freedom a little more.

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