Ramallah, 23-07-08: Dr. Mustafa Barghouthi MP, the General Secretary of the Palestinian National Initiative, said that as Senator Barak Obama comes from a background more sensitive than any other US presidential candidate to the issues of fairness and justice; he called on him to support and be sensitive to the injustices suffered by the Palestinian people during the 60 years of displacement, homelessness, and –if he wins the presidency- that he will commit to working toward ending the occupation.
Barghouthi made clear that it is impossible for America to act as mediator in the peace process whilst being pro-Israeli. To him: “Obama faces a dilemma of how to reverse the previous administration’s policy –full aligned alongside Israel- in order to be an honest and neutral broker and an influential power in the Region.”
He added that there is no doubt that Obama realized during his visit that solving the Palestinian issue is key to stability in the Region, and that this will not be achieved as long as the International Community acts by double standards.
Barghouthi hopes that Obama remembers that Jerusalem has to be the capital of a Palestinian State and that there will not be any Palestinian state without Jerusalem as a capital. He added that it is unacceptable to adopt any position that is contrary to the international law and the decision of The Hague Tribunal, which stipulates the need to end the Israeli occupation of Jerusalem.
Barghouthi said: “We hope that Obama will bring change for Americans, but we also hope that he will hold a change in the US policy toward the Palestinian cause and that he will end the previous administrations’ bias toward Israel.”
He pointed out that Obama paid attention to the voices of Jews, but that he should also remember that there are millions of other voices coming from Arab and Muslim Americans who are waiting for his policy, when deciding how to vote in the upcoming elections.
He highlighted that Obama spent an unequal amount of time in Israel and the Palestinian territories, meeting many more Israeli representatives that their Palestinian counterparts.
Barghouthi added that he had hoped that Obama would have visited the villages affected by the apartheid Wall after his visit to Sderot.
Dr. Mustafa Barghouthi: 0599/ 201 528
Or: 0599/ 940 073