Israel News | Zionism Israel Center | Zionism History | Zionism Definitions | ZioNation | Forum | Zionism FAQ | Maps| Edit

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Marwan Barghouti begins his election campaign - as a champion of Hamas

Last update - 17:01 25/11/2009       
Barghouti: Shalit abduction achieved what no dialogue could
By Amos Harel and Avi Issacharoff, Haaretz Correspondents and Haaretz Service
Fatah strongman, expected to win Palestinian election if freed in Shalit deal, declares intention to run.
Fatah strongman Marwan Barghouti said in an interview on Wednesday that he intends to run in the next Palestinian presidential election, and remarked that the abduction of Israel Defense Forces soldier Gilad Shalit by Gaza militants achieved what no negotiations could ever achieve.
Shalit was kidnapped in a cross border raid in 2006, and has been held prisoner by Hamas for over three years. Recent reports suggest that Israel and Hamas are closer than ever to reaching an agreement on a deal that would see hundreds of Palestinian prisoners released in exchange for Shalit's freedom. It is unclear whether Barghouti will be among those prisoners, as he is currently serving five consecutive life sentences in an Israeli prison for his role in murderous terror attacks.
"Maybe Israel will finally understand that Hamas' demands cannot be ignored," Barghouti told the Milan-based Corriere Della Sera, adding that the main issue topping his agenda currently is achieving unity between rival Palestinian factions.
"Following a [unity] deal, I will be ready to submit my candidacy" for Palestinian president, he said.
Remarking on the Shalit prisoner exchange, Barghouti said "this time it is really happening, and some of the prisoners will finally be free." He added that the capture of an Israeli soldier was directly responsible for progress that no dialogue has been able to achieve - the release of prisoners. "It appears that Israel had no choice but to yield to Hamas' list of prisoners, of which I am one," Barghouti told the newspaper, via his attorney.
If Barghouti is released in a prisoner exchange, it could have far-reaching strategic implications on internal Palestinian balance of power, and attempts to strike a peace deal with Israel.
Fatah officials say that Barghouti's release could expedite the resignation of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, paving the way for Barghouti to assume the post.
Palestinian opinion polls show that Barghouti is extremely popular among the Palestinian public. Though Hamas is likely to gain popularity if it is able to secure the release of Palestinian prisoners in exchange for Shalit, no single Hamas figure seems likely to defeat Barghouti in Palestinian elections.
It is safe to assume that many within Barghouti's Fatah faction would be happy to see Barghouti stay under lock and key; many of them took part in the efforts to block his allies from gaining seats in the last party primary. But Barghouti opponents understand that it is important for Fatah to present a candidate capable of defeating Hamas, especially if the Shalit deal goes through.
Barghouti, who maintains exceptionally close relations with the Hamas leadership, has been trying to promote Palestinian unity for quite some time. In an interview from his prison cell last week, Barghouti voiced support for the idea of Palestinian "resistance" alongside peace negotiations with Israel.
Among Palestinians, the term "resistance" is an umbrella name for anything from terror attacks, which Barghouti has supported in the past, to non-violent demonstrations. In any event, it is clear that Barghouti has adopted a more hawkish line than Abbas.
Officials from the Palestinian Ministry for Prisoner Affairs convened in Jericho on Tuesday against the backdrop of a framed photograph of Barghouti hugging fellow prisoners from a range of Palestinian factions, among them Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine Secretary General Sadat and two senior Hamas officials. That is Barghouti's way - putting Palestinian unity above peace talks considerations. This stance has proven popular with the Palestinian public and has bolstered Barghouti's position as the prominent leadership candidate.
Barghouti's wife, who attended the meeting, was even welcomed as "the next president's wife."
"I hope to see him soon," she said, somewhat evasively. Those who have met with him recently say that Barghouti has accepted the challenge and is preparing himself for the political activity that will inevitably follow his release, should it come to pass.

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors. Originally posted at Please do link to these articles, quote from them and forward them by email to friends with this notice. Other uses require written permission of the author.


Post a Comment

<< Home

Subscribe to
email newsletter for this site and others

Powered by

Feedblitz subcription
To this Blog only

You can receive our articles by e-mail. For a free subscription, please enter your e-mail address:

Preview | Powered by FeedBlitz

Web Logs & Sites

This Site

Zionism & Israel
Zionation Web Log
IMO Web Log (Dutch)

ZI Group
Zionism-Israel Pages
Israël-Palestina.Info (Dutch & English)
Israƫl in de Media
MidEastWeb Middle East News and Views
MidEastWeb Middle East Web Log

Brave Zionism
Israel: Like this, as if
Israel & Palestijnen Nieuws Blog

Friends and Partners
EinNews Israel
Israel Facts
Israel Proud Adam Holland
Middle East Analysis
Irene Lancaster's Diary
Middle East Analysis
Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
Israel Facts (NL)
Cynthia's Israel Adventure
Jeff Weintraub Commentaries and controversies
Meretz USA Weblog
Pro-Israel Bay Bloggers
Simply Jews
Fresno Zionism
Anti-Racist Blog
Sharona's Week
Z-Word Blog
Jewish State
Take A Pen - Israel Advocacy
Zionism on the Web
ZOTW's Zionism and Israel News
Zionism On The Web News
ZOTW's Blogs
Christian Attitudes
Dr Ginosar Recalls
Questions: Zionism anti-Zionism Israel & Palestine
Southern Wolf
Peace With Realism
Sanda's Place
Liberal for Israel
Realistic Dove
Blue Truth
Point of no Return
Christians Standing With Israel
Christians Standing With Israel - Blog

Encylopedic Dictionary of Zionism and Israel
Middle East Encyclopedia
Zionism and its Impact
Zionism & the creation of Israel
Zionism - Issues & answers
Maps of Israel
Christian Zionism Resources
Christian Zionism
Albert Einstein
Gaza & the Qassam Victims of Sderot
Zionist Quotes
Six Day War
Jew Hatred
Learn Hebrew
Arab-Israeli Conflict
International Zionism

Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel
Israel Boycott
Boycott Israel?
Amnesty International Report on Gaza War
Boycott Israel?
Dutch Newspaper Reporting: A Study of NRC Handelsblad
Hamas (Dutch)
Dries van Agt (Dutch)
Isfake lobby

At Zionism On the Web
Articles on Zionism
Anti-Zionism Information Center
Academic boycott of Israel Resource Center
The anti-Israel Hackers
Antisemitism Information Center
Zionism Israel and Apartheid
Middle East, Peace and War
The Palestine state
ZOTW Expert Search
ZOTW Forum

Judaica & Israel Gifts
Jewish Gifts: Judaica:
Ahava Products

Powered by Blogger

Subscribe to
Posts [Atom]

RSS V 1.0

International Affairs Blogs - BlogCatalog Blog Directory