The most popular Palestinian leader alive.. Who is Marwan Barghouti?

With increasing talk about the political future in the Palestinian territories after the Israeli war on Gaza, the name of the imprisoned Palestinian leader Marwan Barghouti is emerging, as one of the few leaders who could play a pivotal role in the coming period.

The Washington Post said on Wednesday that the United States and governments in the Middle East raised the issue of the Israeli authorities’ treatment of the imprisoned Palestinian leader, Marwan Barghouti. His family and supporters said that he had been subjected to physical and psychological abuse since 2016, but the conditions of his detention intensified further after the Hamas attack on Israel on October 7.

Barghouti is a prominent Palestinian political figure. He is a member of the Fatah Central Committee and the Palestinian Legislative Council. He is currently serving five life sentences in an Israeli prison.

His biography
Barghouti was born in the village of Kober in the West Bank in 1962. Palestinians, and others, often describe him as “the Palestinian Mandela.” He is seen as one of the strongest candidates to succeed Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.

As a teenager, Barghouti led the student movements for Fatah, the political party founded by Yasser Arafat and now headed by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

Barghouti was expected to run in the presidential elections in July 2021, as he co-led the “Freedom” list with Nasser Qudwa before the legislative elections in May 2021, but Abbas canceled both elections.

In the period leading up to the first intifada, Barghouti was still a student leader at Birzeit University and participated in popular protests.

Israel deported him to Jordan in May 1987 and was only allowed to return to the West Bank in 1993 as part of the Oslo Accords. The following year, 1994, he became Secretary-General of the Fatah movement in the West Bank.

During the Second Intifada, Israel accused him of directing military attacks against Israeli targets, and establishing what was known as the “Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades” at that time.

He was arrested by Israel and sentenced by an Israeli military court in 2002 to five consecutive life sentences for organizing attacks against Israelis.

Since his imprisonment, Barghouti has been active in the “Prisoner Movement,” and publishes various articles from inside prison to communicate with the outside world.

While in prison, he helped draft the 2006 National Reconciliation Document for Prisoners, which he co-signed with Abdel Khaleq al-Natsheh (Hamas), Bassam Saadi (Islamic Jihad in Palestine), Abdel Rahim Mallouh (Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine), and Mustafa Badarneh (Front Front for the Liberation of Palestine). Democracy to liberate Palestine).

Israeli officials describe him as a “terrorist” and accuse him of ordering suicide bombings against civilian targets, but Barghouti confirmed in court that he had nothing to do with any of the attacks he is accused of orchestrating. On the other hand, a Guardian newspaper report describes him as “the most popular Palestinian leader alive.”

In a report published by the British newspaper last February, it said that the release of Marwan Barghouti could change politics in the Palestinian territories.

She pointed out that almost all opinion polls since his imprisonment two decades ago indicate that Barghouti is the preferred presidential candidate of the Palestinian people, if he is able to hold free elections.

Barghouti was at the top of the list of prisoners that Hamas wanted Israel to release, in exchange for the release of Israeli hostages held by it, according to officials from the Middle East who spoke to the American newspaper.

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