web analytics
July 29, 2014 / 2 Av, 5774
Israel at War: Operation Protective Edge
 
 
InDepth
Sponsored Post
IDC Advocacy Room IDC Fights War on Another Front

Student Union opens ‘hasbara’ room in effort to fill public diplomacy vacuum.



PLO: Battle for Succession Has Begun

There's no shortage of candidates for PA deputy president -- including Marwan Barghouti, jailed for five life sentences for his role in terror attacks.

Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas chairs a meeting of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization.

Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas chairs a meeting of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization.
Photo Credit: Issam Rimawi/Flash90

Originally published at Gatestone Institute.

Over the past few months, a succession battle has been quietly raging in the Palestinian Authority (PA).

This behind-the-scenes battle is continuing even as the PA leadership conducts secret peace talks with Israel.

In fact, the U.S.-sponsored peace negotiations have served as a catalyst for increased calls by senior PLO and Fatah officials to start planning for the day after Mahmoud Abbas’s departure from the scene.

Like his predecessor Yasser Arafat, the 78-year-old Abbas has been running the PA in an autocratic fashion since his election as president in January 2005.

And like Arafat, Abbas has since managed to keep many of his critics silent by providing them with funds, luxurious offices and vehicles, secretaries, bodyguards and assistants.

Many senior members of the PLO and Fatah, for example, each receive from Abbas tens of thousands of dollars every month to enable them to cover the costs of office rentals and vehicles, as well as salaries for their secretaries and henchmen.

Still, the funds have not been able to buy Abbas 100% quiet.

His controversial decision to resume peace talks with Israel several weeks ago has prompted a number of Palestinians to talk about the need for Abbas to end his autocratic rule.

It is worth noting that Abbas decided to return to the negotiating table with Israel shortly after most members of the PLO Executive Committee voted against the move.

Since then, Abbas has been facing increased calls to appoint a deputy president of the Palestinian Authority as a way of limiting his powers.

At a recent meeting of the Fatah Central Committee, one official, Tawfik Tirawi, did not hesitate to bring up the subject in the presence of Abbas.

Tirawi, a former security commander in the West Bank, proposed that Abbas appoint jailed Fatah leader Marwan Barghouti as deputy president. Barghouti is serving a five life-term prison sentence for his role in terror attacks against Israelis during the second intifada.

Fatah officials said that Abbas did not comment on the idea.

Palestinian sources said that there is no shortage of figures who consider themselves appropriate candidates to serve as deputy president.

They include: Jibril Rajoub, a former security commander, Mohammed Shtayyeh, a former minister and member of the Palestinian negotiating team with Israel, Saeb Erekat, the chief PLO negotiator and Nabil Sha’ath, a former PA foreign minister.

Those who want Abbas to appoint a deputy are actually telling the PA president that they are fed up with his continued refusal to share powers or consult with others about crucial matters such as the peace talks with Israel.

Abbas’s critics often complain that he is keeping most PLO and Fatah officials in the dark regarding the ongoing peace talks.

There are only three Palestinians who know what is really happening inside the closed room where the talks are taking place: Abbas, Erekat and Shtayyeh.

Abbas has justified his refusal to brief PLO and Fatah officials on the content of the negotiations by saying that the U.S. Administration has prohibited the Palestinians and Israelis from talking in public about the issue.

But the peace talks with Israel are only one of the things criticized by Abbas’s opponents.

Several PLO and Fatah officials have recently been talking about the need for “leadership change.” They maintain that it is time for the Palestinians to start thinking of replacing Abbas’s old-guard regime with young and fresh leaders.

However, as of now Abbas, whose term in office expired back in January 2009, has shown no sign that he is willing to accept the principle of power-sharing. The battle for succession is therefore likely to intensify in the coming weeks and months, casting a shadow not only over his regime, but also the peace talks with Israel.

About the Author: Khaled Abu Toameh, an Arab Muslim, is a veteran award-winning journalist who has been covering Palestinian affairs for nearly three decades.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

Please use the Facebook Tab below to leave your comment:

3 Responses to “PLO: Battle for Succession Has Begun”

  1. Daniel Cozza says:

    I’m hope a nomination a realist man.

  2. S'il y avait un homme réaliste parmi ces irréalistes…il serait depuis longtemps
    assassinés…!!!

  3. S'il y avait un homme réaliste parmi ces irréalistes…il serait depuis longtemps
    assassinés…!!!

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Loading Facebook Comments ...
Loading Disqus Comments ...
Current Top Story
Some of the missile fire comes from launchers planted in cemeteries, mosques, schools and hospitals. This is an aerial photo of one such launch in Beit Lahiya earlier this week.
Sleepless in Rishon Lezion, IDF Attacks in Gaza Continue
Latest Indepth Stories
Young children 'recruited' by the Al Qaeda-inspired Islamic State of Iraq and al-Shams (ISIS) terrorist group for a Shari'a jihadist army in Iraq and Syria.

ISIS poses a great threat to the entire civilized world in general and liberal democracies in particular.

kerry clown

Kerry is preoccupied with pressuring Israel, notwithstanding the transformation of the Arab Spring .

journalism

With no shortage of leftist media that seek to distort the news, what should our Torah response be?

Jewish Home leader Naftali Bennett

Because let’s face it: Hamas obviously can’t defeat the IDF in the field, soldier against soldier

As Peres retires, Israel fights sour legacy: Insistence on setting policy in line with hopes, rather than with reality.

Our capital was not arbitrarily chosen, as capitals of some other nations were.

UNHRC High Commissioner Navi Pillay accuses the IDF of possible war crimes in Gaza again, cutting slack to Hamas.

There is much I can write you about what is going here, but I am wondering what I should not write. I will start by imagining that I am you, sitting at home in the Los Angeles area and flipping back and forth between the weather, traffic reports, the Ukraine, Mexican illegals and Gaza. No […]

Should Jews in Europe take more responsibility in self-defense of community and property?

It is time for a total military siege on Gaza; Nothing should enter the Gaza Strip.

Germany’s The Jewish Faith newspaper ominously noted, “We Jews are in for a war after the war.”

The truth is we seldom explore with kids what prayer is supposed to be about.

Almost as one, Jews around the world are acknowledging the day-to-day peril facing ordinary Jews in Israel and the extraordinary service of the IDF in protecting them.

More Articles from Khaled Abu Toameh
The new peace partners; Hams leader Khaleed Meshaal (L) and Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas

Hamas seems to have reached the conclusion that the reconciliation pact with Abbas will not do it any good.

Hamas "civil servants" in the streets of Gaza.

The dispute over money between Hamas and Fatah shows that each group signed the reconciliation agreement for its own interests.

While they continue to hate Israel and seek its destruction, many Arabs admire the independence of Israel’s judicial system.

The Palestinian Authority has jailed more than 350 Arabs for “security” reasons in just 2014.

Kerry has literally been “begging” Abbas to agree to the extension of the peace talks.

Abbas and the Arab leaders thumb their noses at U.S. conditions, instead they set their own.

Even if Abbas is forced — under U.S. Pressure and threats — to make concessions, the Palestinians will not “relinquish their rights.”

Palestinians are worried that Daesh terrorists will perpetrate atrocities against those who oppose their ideology and activities.

    Latest Poll

    Do you think the FAA ban on US flights to Israel is political?






    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/columns/khaled-abu-toameh/plo-battle-for-succession-has-begun/2013/10/23/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: