Yasser Arafat

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Yasser Arafat

Yasser Arafat (1929-08-04 or 1929-08-242004-11-11) was co-founder and Chairman of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) (1969–2004), President of the Palestinian National Authority (PNA) (1993–2004), and co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1994.

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  • Those who call us terrorists wish to prevent world public opinion from discovering the truth about us and from seeing the justice on our faces. They seek to bide the terrorism and tyranny of their acts, and our own posture of self-defence.
    • ibid.
  • The Israelis are mistaken if they think we do not have an alternative to negotiations. By Allah I swear they are wrong. The Palestinian people are prepared to sacrifice until either the last boy and the last girl raise the Palestinian flag over the walls, the churches and the mosques of Jerusalem.
    • in a speech given on 1995-08-06, at a party to celebrate the birth of his daughter (reported in Haaretz on 1995-09-06 and in The Jerusalem Post on 1995-09-07)
  • We plan to eliminate the state of Israel and establish a purely Palestinian state. We will make life unbearable for Jews by psychological warfare and population explosion. . . . We Palestinians will take over everything, including all of Jerusalem.
    • in front of an Arab audience in Stockholm, 1996 [1]
  • Are you asking me while I am under complete siege? You are a wonderful journalist. You have to respect your profession. You have to be accurate when you are speaking with General Yasser Arafat. Be quiet! You are covering, with such questions, the terrorist activities of the Israeli occupation and the Israeli crimes. Be fair! Why do you make these certain mistakes? Thank you. Bye, bye!
    • Angry response to the CNN Journalist Christiane Amanpour when she asked – while interviewing him live on March 29th, 2002: "Secretary of State Colin Powell has spoken to you, I understand. He has also spoken publicly. He called on you to rein in the violence. What do you make of that statement, and can you and will you rein in that violence?"
  • This child, who is grasping the stone, facing the tank, is it not the greatest message to the world when that hero becomes a martyr? We are proud of them.
    • On Palestinian Authority Television (2002-01-15)
  • I swear to God, I will see [the Palestinian state], whether as a martyr or alive. Please, God, give me the honor of becoming a martyr in the fight for Jerusalem.
  • This is my homeland; no one can kick me out


About Yasser Arafat

    • Terje Roed Larsen, United Nations Special Coordinator for peace negotiations in the Middle East
    • Quoted in "In a Ruined Country", The Atlantic Monthly, 2005-07-29.

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