FILE: Palestinian children hold a poster of jailed Fatah leader Marwan Barghouti. Photograph: Nayef Hashlamoun /Reuters

“We call on Marwan Barghouti to be nominated for President of Palestine”

Palestinian and Arab intellectuals and activists issue a statement on the Palestinian situation; and in solidarity with Marwan Barghouti in his nomination for the presidency of Palestine.

The Palestine Project
5 min readFeb 20, 2021


The call for the Palestinian elections, which it is hoped will take place on time this time round, provides an opportunity to reflect on the comprehensive deadlock that the Palestinian cause and its national movement has reached. The situation has never reached this low level, for which a large part of responsibility for the deterioration falls on both the de-facto authorities in Ramallah and Gaza.

A long time ago, the Palestinian people lacked a leadership they can rely on; the PLO was marginalized; and the Palestinian schism became the norm. The leading Fatah movement became merely a political party of authority, or a party for the president, who consolidated all powers in his hands (executive, legislative and judicial); in an environment where freedoms are being restricted; the rule of the few becomes the norm; disregard of the majority rule; disregard of all principles, popular institutions and basic laws; the attempt to engineer results of the elections before they take place — elections that are well over due by at least 10 years.

As signatories to this statement, we stress the link between the crisis of the political entities (the organization, the authority and the factions) and the crisis of the Palestinian national project that is bound by the unfair and humiliating Oslo Accords; and we regard that these two crises are linked to the dominant political class, which has become entrenched as a result of the transformation from a national liberation movement into an authority in a part of the land, ruling a part of the entirety Palestinian people, and influencing only a portion of their rights.

We also affirm that Palestine today needs an ethical and political Intifada (uprising) in order to regain its narrative as a liberation movement that resists colonial, racist and brutal on-going Israeli annexation.

The Palestinians are in dire need of political change based on rebuilding a unified national identity; and the re-establishment of their national governing institutions based on true representations and democratic principles. Palestinians need to liberate themselves from the idea of a sole leader and the reverence of such individual leader. A need to formulate a collective leadership that expresses the will of the Palestinian people wherever they may reside; be it in historical Palestine and in the diaspora/ exile. This would ensure that the cause of Palestine returns to its rightful place, as symbol of liberation and democracy in the Arab World.

Obviously, this also requires liberation from the shackles of Oslo Accords and the restoration of the Palestinian national entities as a true national liberation movement, according to a vision based on the unity of the Palestinian people as a whole, the unity of their cause, their land and their historical narrative.

We believe that real change must begin by causing a political shock at the leadership level. Therefore, we see hundreds and thousands of competent youth activists deserving of the leadership position, led by the prisoner Marwan Barghouti, who has been detained in Israeli prisons for eighteen years. Barghouti has the clout and charectaristics to assume such responibility of the leadersup role, which in turn would enables Fatah, and with it the overall Palestinian national movement, to regain its true pupose and standing on the Arab and international levels.

Therefore, we hope that Marwan Barghouti will be nominated for the presidency of Palestine, with our emphasis on the need to proceed with the electoral process to rebuild the PLO by organizing elections of the Palestine National Council where all Palestinians can participate in this election process where ever they reside and not just in the occupied territories.


(List was translated by Goggle. Appologies for any misspeling)

Elias Khoury, Michel Kilo, Majida Rafaa Al-Tahtawi, Dr. Asaad Ghanem, Dr. Nadia Nasr-Najab, Moeen Al-Taher, Dr. Youssef Salama, Samira Al-Masalma, Bakr Awawda, Dr. Laila Habash, Laila Shahid, Farouk Mardam, Nubar Hovsebian, Muhammad Barada, Khaled Fahmy, Ali Atassi, Yassin Hajj Saleh, Muhammad Bennis, Anis Fadl Mohsen, Ziad Majed, Basil Ghattas, Hoshink Osei, Mona Asaad, Mustafa Al-Wali, Abdo Al-Asadi, Khaled Issa, Hoda Al-Mashharawi, Tayseer Al-Khatib, Anwar Badr, Zakaria Al-Sakal, Awni Al-Mashni, Ahmed Al-Aidi, Dr. Azzam Amin, Emad Rashdan, Dr. Ibrahim Shahoud, Abdul Latif Deeb, Bassam Ibrahim, Dr. Rashid Al-Haj Saleh, Riad Khoury, Atef Al-Amawi, Mishaal Al-Adawi, Osama Hamid, Amer Al-Hazel, Talal Mustafa, Ghassan Abu Rashid, Khalil Hussein, Naji Al-Khatib, Hassan Marei, Amira Abu Shleih, Bayan Nadaf, Nabil Al-Sahli, Lamis Najjar, Ahmed Al-Madhoun Kamel Mazaal, Fadl Al Sakkal, Rashid Issa, Qais Qadri, Nidal Jaber, b. Ahmed Al-Natour, Ahmed Al-Bash, Basem Kaddoura, Muhammad Agbaria, Jihad Harb Mansour, Michel Mansour, Muhammad Awawdeh, Murad Abu Roomi, Osama Muhammad Aghi, Ahmed Abu Rashid, Muhammad Deeb, Salah Abd al-Ati, Yusef Baraka, Imad Salama Sharqawi, Muhammad Abazid Ali Al-Kurdi, Ahmed Awad Muhammad, Yusef Saeed, Suleiman Muhanna, Bosalha Samir, Ahmed Awad, Najeh Sadiq Habasha, Abdul Wahid Al-Alwani, Samia Issa, Ghada Abd Rabbo, Mahmoud Abu Hamid, Zayed Dana, Hassan Khalifa, Nabih Muhammad Nabhan, Taha Abdul Wahid Al-Wali, Adnan Melhem, Hussam Miro, Mahmoud Al-Jarrah, Mahmoud Shwahin, Fadil Hammoud, Mowafak Al-Aidi, Muhammad Al-Abtah, Muheeb Al-Barghouti, Mutasim Al-Sioufi, Wissam Zuaiter, Youssef Ayyash, Othman Mohammed, Khaled Abu Issa, Mahmoud Ramadan, Hassan Khalifa, Zafer Al-Najjar, Hussein Al-Khaled, Talal Abdul-Moati Mustafa, Mutassim Al-Sioufi, Muhammad Eid, Samir Haidar, Majeed Abboud, Ahmed Al-Youssef, Muhammad Helwa, Amin Al-Kalakh, Majed Kayali…


الياس خوري، ميشيل كيلو، ماجدة رفاعة الطهطاوي، د. أسعد غانم، د. نادية نصر ـ نجاب، معين الطاهر، د. يوسف سلامة، سميرة المسالمة، بكر عواودة، د. ليلي حبش، ليلى شهيد، فاروق مردم، نوبار هوفسبيان ،محمد برادة ،خالد فهمي ،علي اتاسي، ياسين الحاج صالح، محمد بنيس، انيس فضل محسن، زياد ماجد، باسل غطاس، هوشنك أوسي، منى أسعد، مصطفى الولي، عبده الأسدي، خالد عيسى، هدى المشهراوي، تيسير الخطيب، أنور بدر، زكريا الصقال، عوني المشني، أحمد العايدي، د. عزام أمين، عماد رشدان، د. إبراهيم شحود، عبد اللطيف ديب، بسام إبراهيم، د. رشيد الحاج صالح، رياض خوري، عاطف العماوي، مشعل العدوي، أسامة حميد، عامر الهزيل، طلال مصطفى، غسان أبو راشد، خليل حسين، ناجي الخطيب، حسن مرعي، أميرة أبو شليح، بيان نداف، نبيل السهلي، لميس نجار، أحمد المدهون، كامل مزعل، فضل السقال، راشد عيسى، قيس قدري، نضال جبر، ب. أحمد الناطور، أحمد الباش، باسم قدورة، محمد اغبارية، جهاد حرب منصور، ميشيل منصور، محمد عواودة، مراد أبو رومي، أسامة محمد أغي، أحمد أبو راشد، محمد ديب، صلاح عبد العاطي، يوسف بركة، عماد سلامة شرقاوي، محمد أبازيد، على الكردي، أحمد عوض محمد، يوسف سعيد، سليمان مهنا، بوسلحة سمير، أحمد عوض، ناجح صادق حبشة، عبد الوحد العلواني، سامية عيسى، غادة عبد ربه، محمود أبو حامد، زايد دعنا، حسن خليفة، نبيه محمد نبهان، طه عبد الواحد الولي، عدنان ملحم، حسام ميرو، محمود الجراح، محمود شواهين، فضيل حمود، موفق العايدي، محمد الابطح، مهيب البرغوثي، معتصم السيوفي، وسام زعيتر، يوسف عياش، عثمان محمد، خالد أبو عيسى، محمود رمضان، حسن خليفة، ظافر النجار، حسين الخالد، طلال عبد المعطي مصطفى، معتصم السيوفي، محمد عيد، سمير حيدر، مجيد عبود، أحمد اليوسف، محمد حلوة، أمين الكلخ، ماجد كيالي،