In a statement released from his prison cell, detained Palestinian political leader, Marwan Barghouthi, stated that May 15, marks the 65th anniversary of the Nakba, when Israel was established in the historic land of Palestine, over the ruins of hundreds of displaced and destroyed villages and towns, and added that on this day, the Palestinians reaffirm their legitimate inalienable Right of Return to their homeland.The Fateh leader said that the Palestinian people will never abandon their legitimate rights, and insist on the implementation of all related international resolutions, including United Nations General Assembly Resolution #194 regarding the Right of Return of the Palestinian refugees to their homeland.

He said that the Palestinians will continue to struggle for their rights, and added that the Palestinian struggle is noble fight to justice and liberation.

Barghouthi said that the Nakba is one of the ugliest crimes in human recent history, as the Palestinians faced horrific acts of ethnic cleansing, massacres and crimes, and added that Israel uprooted and displaced an entire nation, destroyed and burnt hundreds of villages, churches and mosques to replace them with Israeli cities.

He called on the Palestinian people to unite, and to intensify their legitimate struggle against the Israeli occupation and its settlements, and called for more activities in support of the Palestinian refugees, especially in Syria.

Barghouthi also called on the Palestinians and their factions to end the internal rifts and divisions, to form a unified leadership for the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), a unified authority, and to form a national unity government that oversees new legislative and presidential elections in Palestine.

He called for more international campaigns, to achieve a full member status at the United Nations, and to conduct a unified strong boycott campaign to isolate Israel on all legal, political, cultural, and economic levels, and to ensure sanctions are imposed on Israel until it ends its illegal occupation and its illegitimate settlements.

In his statement, the detained leader said that the Palestinians must reject all attempts that aim at forcing them to abandon their legitimate rights, to insist on a full and comprehensive Israeli withdrawal from all of the Palestinian territories Israel occupied in 1967, including Jerusalem, to ensure the full implementation of resolution 194, and the liberation of all detainees.

As for direct negotiations with Israel, Barghouthi said that Israel must first acknowledge the legitimate Palestinian rights before talks are resumed, and added that any talk of modifications on the 1967 borders must be rejected.

“The Palestinians must not provide free concessions to the illegal occupation”, Barghouthi stated, “Our people will remain steadfast, and will continue to struggle for liberation, freedom and independence”.

The Palestinian Nakba