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Israelis arrest Palestinian presidential candidate in Jerusalem

[JURIST] Israeli authorities Friday arrested independent Palestinian presidential candidate Mustafa Barghouti, a distant relative of imprisoned militant and withdrawn presidential contender Marwan Barghouti, as he tried to attend prayers at the El Aksa Mosque in East Jerusalem. He was later taken a checkpoint outside the city limits and released. Mustafa Braghouti is one of seven candidates running in the January 9 election to succeed late Palestinian president Yasser Arafat; the front-runner at the moment appears to be Fatah leader and PLO chair Mahmoud Abbas. Barghouti was previously detained by Israeli security agents in December when he came into Jerusalem without a permit. Palestinians claim Jerusalem as the proper capital of Palestine but the claim is rejected by Isreal, which claims it as its own seat of government. From Israel, the Jersualem Post has more. The Palestinian Central Election Commission has official background information on the upcoming vote here.

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