Jailed Fatah member Marwan Barghouti 311.
(photo credit: Oleg Popov / Reuters)
Jailed Fatah leader Marwan Barghouti expressed disappointment on Thursday with
the recent prisoner-exchange agreement between Hamas and Israel, noting that it
did not include veteran Fatah inmates and leaders of Palestinian
Barghouti, who was arrested by the IDF in 2002 in Ramallah, was
tried and convicted on charges of murder and sentenced to five life
sentences. Hamas had initially insisted on including Barghouti in the
prisoner exchange, but later abandoned the demand.
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In an interview with
newspaper, Barghouti said: “We welcome the exchange deal which
saw the release of hundreds of strugglers who had spent many years in occupation
prisons. But we were hoping that the deal would also include 130
strugglers, most of them from Fatah, who have spent more than 20 years in
prison. It’s unfortunate that this was bypassed.”
The newspaper did not
say how the interview was conducted. However, Barghouti has given several
interviews over the past few years through his lawyers and
Barghouti also voiced disappointment over the fact that the
swap did not include jailed Palestinian leaders like himself.
full confidence that the Palestinian people wouldn’t give up on their prisoners
and that freedom is inevitable for the people and prisoners,” Barghouti
He also launched an attack on the PA leadership for failing to do
more to secure the release of Palestinians from Israeli prisons.
upon the Palestinian leadership to deal seriously and with more responsibility
with the case of the prisoners,” Barghouti said. “They should stop ignoring this
case as they have been doing over the past two decades.”
that the Palestinians won’t agree to resume peace talks with Israel before all
Palestinians are released from Israeli prison.
Barghouti also urged the
PA leadership to pursue its efforts to “isolate” Israel in the international
arena and “expand the cycle of peaceful and popular resistance” in the