• Short Summary

    Palestinian leader George Habash predicted on February 3 the Palestinian parliament-in-exile would reject the United States Middle East peace plan.

  • Description

    SV PLFP leader George Habash seated with translator

    Habash speaking (SOT)

    SV PLO deputy military commander Abu Jihad speaking (SOT)


    (SEQUENCE TWO) HABASH: "The PFLP is rejecting final Reagan's plan, any Federation with the Jordans while Arafat is going the other way. Let me tell you, at a meeting we reached many important decisions. At the first meeting I personally attended, we reached a very clear decision saying 'no' to Reagan's plan. 'No' to any Federation or Confederation with the Jordans except after we have our own independent estate. We reached to a number of decisions with all regard as talkative decisions and acceptable regarding the PLFP. Of course I cannot say that these decisions represent the political view of the front of our voice 100 per cent. But these decisions are acceptable of the minimal decisions."

    (SEQUENCE THREE) ABU JIHAD: "All Palestinians are supporting the unity of their PLO and all the Palestinians are around the PLO, therefore we have not to be afraid of what is coming in the PNC."

    Initials RdeL/BB

    Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved

    Background: Palestinian leader George Habash predicted on February 3 the Palestinian parliament-in-exile would reject the United States Middle East peace plan. There had been fears of a split in the Palestinian National Council (PNC) over moves to accept the plan. The PNC is due to meet in Algiers on February 14. The vote was expected to produce a showdown between pragmatists anxious to get the peace process moving and hardliners rejecting any compromise. Dr. Habash, leader of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), was optimistic the PNC would not adopt the plan. President Ronald Reagan's proposals called for Palestinian home rule in association with Jordan, but ruled out a Palestinian state. It has been criticised but not flatly rejected by Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) leader Yasser Arafat/ Dr. Habash told a news conference in Damascus there was no cause to fear a split in the PNC. He said his party would enter the council meetings confident of cementing Palestinian national unity. Meanwhile the PLO's deputy military commander Khalil Al-Wazir, also known as Abu Jihad, revealed plans to unify all Palestinian forces into a "Palestine National Liberation Army". The PLO guerrillas currently have a unified command council, but are split among eight separate commando groups. Mr. Wazir said the PLO had the support of the Palestinian people and was not afraid of decisions made by the PNC. The PLO have so far refused to abide by U.S. peace plans.

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