//Israel arrests Hamas Cabinet Minister

Israel arrests Hamas Cabinet Minister

06-04-2006

RAMALLAH, West Bank (AP) — Israeli police on Thursday arrested a minister in the Palestinians’ new Hamas-led government, a Hamas official said.

Khaled Abu Arafa, minister of Jerusalem affairs, was arrested along with his bodyguard on his way to Izzariya, a suburb near Jerusalem, where he was planning to open an office, the official said on condition of anonymity because he feared Israeli retribution.

Further details of the arrest were not immediately available.

However, it appears Abu Arafa may have been arrested for trying to open the office. Part of Izzariya is in Jerusalem, and Hamas is prohibited by Israeli law from opening offices in the city.

Israeli police did not immediately comment.

Abu Arafa has been detained several times by Israel in the past.

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