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RAMALLAH, West Bank (AP) — Palestinian officials say they have arrested a staffer in the office of the chief negotiator on suspicion of leaking documents to Israel.

The officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the issue, say Sunday that the man confessed to providing information to the Israelis. The suspect is said to have worked for 20 years in the negotiation department. Chief negotiator Saeb Erekat and his office declined comment.

Erekat, who also serves as the secretary general of the PLO Executive Committee, is one of the most prominent Palestinian public officials and the discovery of a mole in his office could hurt his standing.

Collaborating with Israel is considered a serious crime in Palestinian society. Some have been killed for doing so.

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