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Two years ago, Arafat’s successor, President Mahmoud Abbas, set up the Anti-Corruption Commission and the special court to deal with corruption cases. So far, two Cabinet ministers have been forced to resign amid corruption allegations.

Natche told the Voice of Palestine radio on Wednesday that the charges against Rashid were filed 10 days ago.

“This man came to the Palestinian revolution without anything (money),” Natche said. “We want to ask where did he get all his money from? This is Palestinian money and should be returned to the Palestinian people.”

“We asked him to come to face these charges, but he did not come,” Natche said, adding that in terms of money, the Rashid case is the biggest currently before the court. “There are bigger ones ahead,” he added.

Natche said 85 cases are currently pending before the corruption court.

Ibrahim Barzak in Gaza City, Gaza Strip, contributed to this report.