Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Palestinian meet stresses right of return
Radical factions meet in Syria for two-day meeting to advocate violence as fastest way to achieve Palestinian political goals
A gathering of radical Palestinian factions and their supporters has stressed the Palestinian refugees' right to return to homes in present-day Israel. The two-day meeting in Damascus determined continued support for a campaign of non-compromise and of Palestinian violence against Israel. It concluded that Palestinians can resort to "resistance" - militant jargon for armed fighting, including terror attacks - as the fastest way to achieve this return and other political objectives.
About 5,000 participants attended, including militant Hamas and other groups.
A final declaration Monday said no Palestinian can forgo the right to return and that legal, economic and media campaigns should be used to defend this.
The conference meant to show opposition to moderate Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and his negotiations with Israel. It called on the United Nations to expel Israel from its ranks.
Earlier Monday in Syria, Hamas politiburo chief Khaled Mashaal warned Abbas against calling early Palestinian elections.