August 14, 2011 - 12:00am

A Palestinian minister was referred to the attorney general Sunday for questioning on corruption charges, a source said.

The source, an official at the Palestinian National Authority's anti-corruption commission, said that the consumer protection society filed a suit against Minister of Economy, Hassan Abu Lebda, accusing him of corruption, mismanagement and receiving bribery.

This is the first time that a Palestinian minister is referred to prosecution while he is still in office.

Last month, the head of the anti-corruption commission, Rafiq Al-Natsha said that the PNA has lifted immunity for several ministers to investigate charges of corruption.

The commission presented the names of some ministers to President Mahmoud Abbas and he accepted to withdraw their immunity, Al-Natsha said.

The ministers are members of Prime Minister Salam Fayyad's government in the West Bank, Al-Natsha told Xinhua, refusing to reveal the number of ministers and or their names. He also noted that lifting the immunity was done in coordination with Fayyad.


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