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Fatah official: "Popular uprising continues" but "conditions are not yet ripe for intifada"

Al-Akhbar, Lebanese daily  |
Headline: “An interview with Abbas Zaki”

Q. For the first time, the Palestinians are united behind their demands, but the negotiations have dragged on for two weeks. What is going on?

[Member of Fatah Central Committee and Fatah Commissioner of Arab Relations and Relations with China Abbas Zaki:] ‘In the past few days the ideas that have come up for discussion have not progressed, because they have not accomplished their goal; every idea was either vague or had a catch. Israel is experienced at evading an admission of defeat. For example, they condition the ceasefire on the cessation of hostilities, as though the legitimate struggle for the liberation of the land constitutes aggression.
They also conditioned our right to an airport and seaport, and even the rebuilding [of Gaza], on the disarmament of the resistance. The delegation refused this, and the Egyptian brothers did not repeat this request. Therefore, our unified delegation received orders to act as a victor…’

Q: The occupied West Bank tried to demonstrate presence through shooting operations and confrontations through rocks. What about the possibility that a third intifada will break out?

[Zaki:] ‘What is happening in Jerusalem and the West Bank is a mass uprising, necessitated by the crimes being carried out by the gangs of settlers and the [Israeli] soldiers. As if history repeats itself, new price tag militias are based on the models of the Lehi, Etzel (i.e., Irgun), and Hagana from the period of the establishment of the state, [David] Ben Gurion who gave the order to carry out massacres under the slogan “Let us defeat the Arabs through fear.” The popular uprising continues, but there are cautious expressions of armed resistance in the West Bank. The conditions are not yet ripe for intifada, as it requires national unity and a culture of widespread mutual responsibility, under a unified leadership that carries out its obligations in order to deal with this large challenge.’”