Elected Palestinian Legislator and senior Fateh leader, Marwan Barghouthi, was forced back into solitary confinement, and his lawyer, Elias Sabbagh, has been prevented from seeing him for more than one month.The Popular Campaign for the Release of Marwan Barghouthi and All Political Prisoners, issued a press release denouncing these policies, which it deems illegal, and stating that Barghouthi was forced back into solitary confinement after he called on the Palestinian people to step-up their nonviolent resistance activities against the occupation and its illegal settlements.
The detained leader called for maintaining popular resistance activities, even when and if, peace talks with Israel are resumed, and stated that the Palestinian leadership in the West Bank must demand the release of all political prisoners before peace talks can be resumed.
He also stated that the leadership must demand that Israel completely stop all of its violations, including all settlement construction and expansion activities, in addition to demanding a clear Israeli recognition of the 1967 borders as the borders of the independent Palestinian State, with East Jerusalem as its capital, before peace talks can be resumed.
Furthermore, Barghouthi called on the Palestinian Authority to resume its international political activities, by heading to the Security Council and the General Assembly of the United Nations, to demand full membership and full statehood recognition.
His statements came as he marks 10 years behind bars. Barghouthi was sentenced by an Israeli military court to more than 540 years, and has spent more than 1,000 days in solitary confinement, and interrogation.
The campaign said that Barghouthi is being punished for calling on the Palestinians to achieve national unity, increasing the scope of nonviolent resistance against the Israeli occupation, the Annexation Wall and Settlements, and for calling on the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank to stop all sorts of security coordination with Israel.
The detained leader has spent a total of 17 years in Israeli prisons, including previous arrests and imprisonments, and was exiled by Israel for seven years. He was only allowed to return to the West Bank following the singing of the Oslo Peace Agreement in 1993 and the establishment of the Palestinian Authority.
Barghouthi was one of the senior detained political leaders who drafted the National Reconciliation Document that set the strategies and the unified vision of different Palestinian factions, including Fateh and Hamas. The document, along with Mecca and Cairo Agreements, became the foundation for ending internal conflict and maintaining national unity, although these have not been fully implemented yet.