On Tuesday at dawn, May 28 2013, senior Fateh leader, a leader who fought the occupation and fought injustice and corruption, Abdul-Aziz Sahin (Abu Ali Shahin), 80, passed away at a hospital in Gaza, due to complication resulting from a liver disease.
He was receiving treatment in the Gaza Strip after he returned to the coastal region at the beginning of this year when the Fateh movement was celebrating its anniversary on January 1, and decided to stay there.
He was moved to Egypt due to his deteriorating health condition, his body was not responding to treatment, and he asked his sons to move him back to Gaza, to be buried there. He was then moved to the al-Shifa medical center in Gaza where he died a few hours later.
Shahin said that he wanted to die in Palestine, in the country of his people who fight for liberation and independence, to hug the soil of his country.
He comes from a Palestinian family from the Basheet village, near Ramla in historic Palestine. His father was killed by Israeli army fire when he led a resistance faction to fight against the ‘Israel’. Five of his uncles were killed by Israeli fire in in the period between 1956 and 1967.
He was kidnapped and imprisoned by Israel for 15 years, including 12 years in solitary confinement. After his release in the early eighties, he formed the Fateh Youth Group, a political bloc in Palestinian universities and colleges.
Abu Ali was kidnaped again, and in 1986 he was forced into exile when he was sent to Jordan, from there he went to Tunis, and joined up with Khalil Al-Wazeer (Abu Jihad) who was assassinated by Israeli commandos.
In the 1990’s, he moved to Egypt amidst tension between the Fateh movement and Hamas over political talks held by Fateh with Israel.
He opposed the Oslo Agreements between the PLO and Tel Aviv, and when he went back to Gaza he was elected as a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council during the 1996 election, the first election since the Palestinian Authority was established; Hamas did not participate.
In July 1998, he held a sit-in protest at an Israeli roadblock between Rafah and Gaza city, sparking a movement of sit-in protests blocking roads that led to illegal Israeli settlements in the Gaza Strip.
He fought corruption in the Palestinian Authority, and in 1997, he organized mass resignations of Palestinian Authority ministers.
In late September 2000, the second Intifada started (The Al-Aqsa Intifada) after former Israeli Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon, accompanied by his armed guards, conducted a provocative ‘visit’ to the Al-Aqsa Mosque in occupied Jerusalem.
In January of 2002, the Israeli army bombarded his home in Gaza.
In 2002, Abu Ali became the representative of Fateh movement in the National and Islamic Movements Committee, that was tasked with following up on Palestinian affairs during the Al-Aqsa Intifada.
He resigned later after blaming the Hamas leadership in exile of vetoing a draft agreement between the factions.