By Khaled Abu Toameh, June 21, 2004.
Note of the Likud of Holland: this is very important; after lying for many years
on how they were trying to fight terror (as it was bound by treaties), the Palestinian Authority
is now finally admitting the truth of commanding the Aksa Martyrs Brigades. In this way,
it is itself responsible for much of the (suicide) terror.
The Palestinian Authority has no plans to dismantle the Aksa Martyrs Brigades,
the armed wing of Fatah, Prime Minister Ahmed Qurei announced on Sunday.
He acknowledged that the group is part of Fatah and said its gunmen are
entitled to play a political role in the future.
“We have clearly declared that the Aksa Martyrs Brigades are part of Fatah,”
Qurei said in an interview with the London-based Asharq al-Awsat newspaper.
“We are committed to them and Fatah bears full responsibility for the group.”
Qurei said his top priority now is to safeguard the security of the Fatah gunmen
who are wanted by Israel. He said they would be integrated into Fatah’s
institutions and would be paid salaries.
“We are working toward ensuring three issues for them on the basis of their
adherence to the PLO’s political program,” Qurei said. “First, they have the
right to play a political role within the framework of Fatah, and this is
guaranteed for each member. Second, we are seeking to ensure their personal
safety, because they are on the run and are wanted and threatened. We will
achieve this with the help of the Quartet and the international community.
Third, we will guarantee their living conditions economically and socially.
The Aksa Martyrs Brigades will not be dismantled.”
Qurei said the Palestinians would continue to fight against Israel for as long as
the occupation exists. But, he went on, “the resistance is not only an armed
struggle.” “As long as there is an occupation, there will be resistance, but the
resistance should take different forms in accordance with the circumstances
and nature of the phase,” he said. “If there is a political horizon, then the form
of resistance should certainly change. We need a resistance that will bring
about results, because we are no longer capable of paying the price.”
Qurei said he did not know who would head the reformed security forces, but
hinted that Arafat would remain in charge. “There is nothing called ‘prime
minister and interior minister,'” he said. “There is a Palestinian establishment
called the Palestinian Authority and it is headed by President Yasser Arafat.”