Reuters reports: From his cell in an Israeli prison, one of the Palestinians’ most revered figures Marwan Barghouti called on Monday for a new wave of civil resistance in their decades-long quest for statehood and for severing all ties with Israel.
Barghouti is a leading figure in the Fatah movement, who was seen as a driving force behind the Palestinians’ last intifada launched in late 2000.
“The launch of large-scale popular resistance at this stage serves the cause of our people,” Barghouti said in a statement commemorating the tenth year of his imprisonment by Israel.
“Stop marketing the illusion that there is a possibility of ending the occupation and achieving a state through negotiations after this vision has failed miserably,” he said in a message read to a crowd of supporters in the West Bank city of Ramallah.
Despite his multiple life sentences on charges of orchestrating lethal attacks and suicide bombings, Barghouti is viewed as a potential successor to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who is also Fatah’s leader.
The call to action comes at a combustible period in the West Bank as economic malaise, moribund diplomacy, and simmering popular discontent bode ill for any peaceful breakthroughs.