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Journalists and lawyers' unions to boycott PA

alestinians in Ramallah and other cities took to the streets yesterday to demonstration against the PA’s security coordination with Israel

After yesterday's violent crackdown by Palestinian security forces, unions are planning to organise further action to protest against the Palestinian Authority's posthumous trial of activist Basel Al-Araj.

In a statement, Naser Abu Baker, head of the Journalists' Syndicate, announced a one-day boycott of the official news coverage in protest of the PA's attack on journalists.

The syndicate may extend its boycott until police officers responsible for the violence are prosecuted, the statement said.

It invited journalists in the occupied West Bank to cover a stand-in due to take place today in Ramallah, and advised them to wear press vests, helmets and gas masks in an expression of anger.

"The manner in which [yesterday's] attacks happened is absolutely not decent, not just for us as reporters, but for the Palestinian society which is still under occupation and seeking freedom and emancipation," Naser said, calling the PA's action "disgraceful and shameful".

Read more: Protests in the West Bank and Gaza over the trial of Basel Al-Araj

The Palestinian Bar Association, for its part, will be running a general strike whereby the affiliate lawyers will suspend work at all courts, government institutions and at the public prosecutor's offices across the occupied West Bank as a result of the PA security forces' assault on citizens, journalists and lawyers.

The association's statement pointed out that what happened was "a serious attack on the right to peaceful assembly and public opinion," stressing the need for authorities to hold accountable those who ordered or are involved in the crackdown.

Palestinians in Ramallah and other cities took to the streets yesterday to demonstration against the PA's security coordination with Israel and the posthumous trial of Al-Araj who was killed by Israeli forces last week. A number of demonstrators were beaten or detained during the protests, including Al-Araj's father.

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