Ma'an News Agency
January 13, 2011 - 1:00am

Fatah leaders heard the preliminary findings of a committee investigating what the Israeli media said were attempts by Mohammed Dahlan to engage a private militia in the West Bank.

The two-day meeting, which ended Wednesday in Ramallah, saw Fatah leader and President Mahmoud Abbas and his top Fatah officials decide to appoint an expanded committee to open a deeper investigation.

This is the second time the committee investigating Dahlan has been expanded, while Fatah officials remain tight-lipped about the exact nature of the probe. Fatah members have confirmed that the investigation centers on Dahlan, but have not explained further.

Deciding to continue the investigation delays the announcement of the findings from the first and second committees.

During the meetings, Fatah officials reviewed the recommendations of its advisory board, a statement said, and studied the proposals in order to submit them for the Revolutionary Council for discussion. The council is the second highest governing body of the party.

Alongside a review of the Dahlan inquiry, Fatah officials said they discussed the current political situation "in light of Israeli crimes" and the internal politics of the Fatah movement.

Abbas briefed committee members on his diplomatic moves, with recent visits to Tunisia where he visited Farouk Qaddoumi, a PLO officer who fell out with Abbas over accuations that the Fatah leader had conspired to kill former President Yasser Arafat. Abbas also made trips to Brazil and Senegal.


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