“My life is in danger,” says activist Fadi Elsalameen. “There’s a green light to use violence against me.”
By Lauren Marcus, World Israel News
The U.S. has warned the Palestinian Authority that death threats made by a PA government affiliated group against an activist are unacceptable, according to a report on Thursday.
The al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, a terrorist group associated with the Fatah party, issued a statement threatening to assassinate PA government critic Fadi Elsalameen last month.
Elsalameen, who has more than a million followers on social media platforms, including Facebook, has posted about corruption within the PA and advocated for reforms in Palestinian society and governance.
He lives in Washington D.C., where he is a non-resident fellow at Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies.
In late March, Elsalameen, who holds American citizenship, traveled from the U.S. to his hometown of as-Samu, near Hebron.
Not long after his arrival, the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade issued a statement claiming that Elsalameen is “one of the most prominent agents of America and Israel.”
“[Our] rifles will be aimed at him and at those with him, without the slightest hesitation,” the statement continued.
Elsalameen appealed to the U.S. government for help, tweeting, “President Abbas’s Al-aqsa brigades issued today an explicit death threat against me for visiting my home town of as-Samu in the Hebron Hills. I have no security and this threat from president Abbas and his security forces cannot be left an answered.”
The tweet, directed at President Joe Biden, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Israeli and Palestinian Affairs Hady Amr, did not generate a response from officials.
President Abbas’s Al-aqsa brigades issued today an explicit death threat against me for visiting my home town of Samoua in the Hebron Hills. I have no security and this threat from president Abbas and his security forces cannot be left an answered @POTUS @SecBlinken @HadyAmr pic.twitter.com/bSzyEBB42m
— Fadi Elsalameen فادي السلامين (@Elsalameen) March 20, 2021
“My life is in danger and the Palestinian Authority’s refusal to condemn a death threat against a U.S. citizen is a green light to use violence against me,” Elsalameen told Axios.
A source told Axios that lawmakers, including Rep. Ilhan Omar and Sen. Bernie Sanders, reached out to the State Department about their concerns for Elsalameen.
Elsalameen told Axios that even after the State Department filed a formal complaint with the PA, the PA did not publicly condemn the death threats against him.
A senior State Department official said the U.S. government is “aware” of the threat against Elsalameen, but gave only a laconic statement on the matter.
“The welfare and safety of U.S. citizens abroad is the State Department’s highest priority,” the official said.
Current PA President Mahmoud Abbas, who is now in his 16th year of what was meant to be a four-year term, is a member of the Fatah party.
It appears that the threats from the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade can be directly linked to the party.