Dozens of thousands gathered in the central West Bank city of Ramallah to participate in a ceremony commemorating the fifth anniversary of the death of President Yasser Arafat.

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Yasser Arafat



Dozens of thousands gathered in the central West Bank city of Ramallah to participate in a ceremony commemorating the fifth anniversary of the death of President Yasser Arafat.

Hundreds of buses and vehicles headed to Ramallah and the residents marched towards the grave of Arafat to place roses on his grave, and to participate in the commemoration.

Fateh movement accused Hamas in Gaza of preventing the commemoration of Arafat while Gaza’s Interior Ministry spokesperson, Ehab Al Ghasseen, denied the accusations. Yet, Fateh officials in Gaza said they were informed by the ministry that they cannot hold any activities.

Al Ghaseen said that the ministry did not prevent any party or any person from commemorating Arafat or from holding public gatherings, and added that the ministry was officially not informed of any public activity.

In Ramallah, member of Fateh’s Central Committee, Arafat’s nephew, Nasser Al Qidwa, said that Israel is responsible for the death of Arafat as its army besieged him in his headquarters while the Israeli government decided to “get rid of him”.

Al Qidwa added that Arafat was poisoned, and that the Palestinian Authority is committed to obtaining the complete information to prove this claim.

During the commemoration of Arafat, President Mahmoud Abbas said that the Palestinians cannot resume the peace process without Israeli recognition of all related international resolutions.

He added that Israel must agree to a full withdrawal to the borders of June 4, 1973.

Abbas further said that the Palestinian demands are legitimate and are coherent with all related UN resolutions.

Yasser Arafat died on November 11, 2004 at age 75. Israel kept him imprisoned in his headquarters in Ramallah for three years until he got sick and was moved to a military hospital in France where he died shortly afterwards.

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