Palestinian Liberation Organisation (PLO) Leader Yasser Arafat went to the Lebanese port of Damour on Tuesday (19 September) to attend a massive graduation ceremony for newly-trained guerrillas.
Palestinian Liberation Organisation (PLO) Leader Yasser Arafat went to the Lebanese port of Damour on Tuesday (19 September) to attend a massive graduation ceremony for newly-trained guerrillas. The PLO have totally rejected the camp David agreements.
SYNOPSIS: As United States Secretary of State Cyrus Vance arrived in the Middle East to seel the camp David agreement, the PLO openly voiced their opposition. With Syria and Libya, the PLO have condemned the agreement as a betrayal of Palestinian and Arab interests, and as a capitulation to Israel.
While these young guerrillas showed their paces and military skills on an obstacle course interspersed with fires, explosions and machinegun fire, the most implacable opponents of the Camp David agreement were setting up their own summit meeting. In Damascus, the leaders of Syria, the Libyan Jamahiriyah, Algeria, South Yemen and the PLO have started talks.
They first met as a group, which they described as a "front for steadfastness and confrontation" last December, to counter the visit to Jerusalem of Egypt's President Anwar Sadat the month before.
These hardliner regard the agreement as a separate peace between Israel and Egypt, despite Mr. Begin's later assurances that Palestinians would have free option of citizenship. The group was reportedly encouraged that Saudi Arabia and Jordan professed coolness towards the agreement.
After the ceremony, Yasser Arafat attacked President Carter for what be termed as America' role in the conspiracy against the Arabs. As Mr. Arafat put it: " I say to Carter, he will pay for this through his interests in the area. When he hits us, we will strike him twice." He challenged the three leaders at Camp David to impose their will on the Palestinian people.