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Palestinian PM issues ban on weapons in bid to end armed chaos (AFP-FRANCE PRESSE) RAMALLAH, West Bank 01/27/05 10:20 AM ET)Source: http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=1515&ncid=1515&e=15&u=/afp/20050127/wl_mideast_afp/mideastpalestinian_050127152003 AFP} Agence France Presse AFP} Agence France Presse Articles-Index-TopPublishers-Index-Top
RAMALLAH, West Bank (AFP) - Palestinian prime minister Ahmed Qorei issued orders forbidding anyone but members of the security services from carrying weapons, negotiations minister Saeb Erakat told AFP.

"Abu Alaa (Qorei) issued an order at the national security council meeting to all the security branches that they must not allow anyone to carry weapons without permission," Erakat said.

The order came in the form of a special decree signed by Qorei who is president of the national security council, Erakat added without giving details on what action would be taken against anyone violating the order.

New Palestinian leader Mahmud Abbas and Qorei have both pledged to put an end to the "armed chaos" on the streets of the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Residents in the West Bank are in theory forbidden from carrying weapons in the West Bank where Israeli troops are under orders to open fire at any armed Palestinians.

However West Bank cities such as Nablus and large parts of the Gaza Strip have been plagued by the rule of the gunmen in recent months and are often no-go areas for most citizens after dark.

Qorei submitted his resignation at one stage in the middle of last year after a spate of kidnappings by gunmen in the Gaza Strip which highlighted a breakdown of law and order in the territories.

Abbas has already moved to restore a degree of order in the Gaza Strip where thousands of members of the Palestinian security forces are under orders to prevent militant groups firing rockets towards Jewish settlements or over the border into Israel. (Copyright © 2005 Agence France Presse. 01/27/05)

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