Young Israel Blasts Palestinian Authority for Racist Real Estate Rule

November 28, 2018

The National Council of Young Israel (NCYI) today blasted the Palestinian Authority for its recent arrest of Issam Akel, a dual Palestinian-American citizen, after he allegedly was involved in selling real estate in East Jerusalem to a Jewish buyer. The Palestinian Authority considers it illegal for a Palestinian to sell land to Jews. Earlier today, United States Ambassador to Israel David Friedman called for Akel’s immediate release, calling his imprisonment “antithetical to the values of the US & to all who advocate the cause of peaceful coexistence.”

“Incarcerating someone solely because he allegedly sold land to a Jewish buyer is deplorable and anti-Semitic,” said NCYI President Farley Weiss. “Previously, Palestinian Arab leaders have called for the death penalty for people selling land to Jews, which is utterly outrageous.”

“We are grateful to Young Israel member and friend Ambassador David Friedman for his strong statement regarding this troubling situation, and for his willingness to highlight the Palestinian Authority’s discriminatory and despicable practice that specifically targets Jews,” added Weiss. “The international community should follow the lead set by the Trump administration and collectively demand that Issam Akel be released without delay.”

“Until such time as Mahmoud Abbas heeds the calls to release Issam Akel and sets him free, the United States should halt any and all aid to the Palestinian Authority,” concluded Weiss. “It is imperative that there be immediate ramifications for such a blatant human rights violation perpetrated against an American citizen by the Palestinian Authority.”