) The June 5 Foreign Policy report examined Yasser and his brother Tariq’s leadership of a number of Palestinian companies in light of recent corruption allegations by Muhammad Rashid, former adviser to late President Yasser Arafat.
Rashid, who was convicted by a PA court of embezzlement last week, has threatened to reveal financial corruption within the current Palestinian leadership.
Yasser Abbas said the Foreign Policy report was “dependent on lies, because it did not make its own investigations, but instead depended on other sources, of which the main source seems entirely unreliable.”
Apparently, one of the pastimes of the Abbas family is to sue news organizations that report on them. They’ve sued Al-Jazeera, Reuters, and Israel’s Channel 1. (Thanks to In Context for the research.) I guess when you can’t jail the journalists, you sue them.
Among other things Yasser Abbas objects to having his company described as a monopoly.
I found this interview with Yasser Abbas and here’s part of it:
A: Falcon, Falcon Tobacco Company – we are the importers of British-American tobacco. We have negotiated this, and it is one company, and it is not the monopoly of the importation of cigarettes in the world. I hope you understand this. British-American is one company. Philip Morris is another company. Gauloise is another company. And all the other importation from Israel is another company. So. it’s a big, broad market. BAT – British-American Tobacco – happens to be one of the largest in the world. We are their importers since nine years. Hamas went into my stores and robbed all my stores, and our loss was greater than any other.
It’s an interesting argument. Because there are multinational companies selling cigarettes, he doesn’t have a monopoly. Of course, the charge is that he’s the exclusive seller in the Palestinian territories.
I’m sure it’s related, though not sure how, but Yasser Abbas’s biography disappeared!