Prominent Fatah leader, and prisoner, Marwan Barghouthi, has decided to run for the presidential election in Palestine, Quds News Network reported.
Hatem Abdel Qader, a member of Fatah’s Revolutionary Council, said that Barghouthi would be Fatah’s most likely candidate if Abbas decides not to run for the election.
“We need to wait to know Abu Mazen’s (Mahmoud Abbas) position regarding being part of the presidential run,” he added “especially that he has already said before that he will not run for the next election despite statements by figures with close ties to him that he is Fatah’s sole candidate.”
“We hope to have one candidate in Fatah,” he added.
Barghouthi is highly regarded as a figurehead of the First and Second Intifadas or uprisings. He was arrested in in Ramallah, in 2002, and sentenced to five life sentences.
In 2011, Hamas insisted on his release, among others in a prisoner exchange, however, Israel rejected Hamas’s efforts. Abdel Qader expected that the occupation state will reject conducting the polls in occupied Jerusalem.
“We do not expect that the occupation will respond to the Palestinian request [to conduct the election in occupied Jerusalem] before its internal election. We will wait until the Europeans put pressure on the Israeli leaders to include Jerusalem in the election”.
Abdel Qader stressed that there will be no election without Jerusalem, as it is Palestine’s capital.
Edited for IMEMC: Ali Salam