Hamas Spokesman Calls for Arafat to Resign
Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat should resign and allow the people to find new leaders, rather than let the new Palestinian uprising fail, the spokesman of the Islamic Resistance Movement, Hamas, Ibrahim Ghosheh, said Sunday.
"If he is wise, Yasser Arafat will understand the realities and resign. He must do so. He must allow the people to find new leaders," said Ghosheh in an interview with AFP in Tehran.
"We are seeing a new Intifada, the fourth," said Ghosheh, referring to four days of violence which have swept across the Palestinian territories and spilled into Israel, after the controversial visit Thursday by Israeli right wing opposition leader Ariel Sharon to Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa mosque compound, Islam's third holiest site.
He accused Arafat of working in coordination with Israel to end the first Intifada, or uprising, which lasted from 1987 to 1993, which stopped with the Oslo process which led to an interim peace agreement between the two sides.
He said Arafat had also put an end to two shorter uprisings in 1996 and 1998. "Will he be so brazen as to do so again? That is the question now," Ghosheh said.
"Arafat must not make this uprising fail. This is the Intifada of al-Aqsa. The Palestinians are extremely attached to this third holy site of Islam, which has belonged to them for 14 centuries," he warned.
"Will this Intifada continue? It is too soon to say. But we are demanding the whole of Palestine, the whole of Jerusalem, while Arafat has conceded 80 percent of our land and two thirds of Jerusalem," he added -- TEHRAN (AFP)
© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)