Israeli Labor leader quits
Israel's Labor Party Chairman Amram Mitzna announced his resignation Sunday evening as leader of the party, blaming senior party members for his decision to quit. "Today, I am returning the mandate I received from members of the Labor Party and I will resign as head of the Labor Party," he said.
Speaking at a press conference, Mitzna launched into a stinging indictment of senior members of the party, who he said had worked incessantly to undermine him. "I was elected by a huge majority, but unfortunately there were people in the present [Labor] leadership who did not internalize or respect this... They put their personal interests before the party."
The Labor leader, who has served less than six months in the post, said he was prepared to fight for his dovish, pro-peace views, but that he was "less sure of my ability and desire to fight every morning anew for my legitimacy as Labor Party chairman."
In a first reaction to this latest development, Palestinian President Yasser Arafat said he was surprised by Mitzna's resignation and asked: "Does this mean the Labour Party is going back to the government?" He told Dubai-based Al Arabiya television: "We hope that whoever replaces him in the leadership will proceed on the same path." (Albawaba.com)
© 2003 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)