calling for Israel's destruction
Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat's foreign minister has acknowledged that the PLO National Covenant, with its many clauses calling for violence and the destruction of Israel, has never been changed, reports Dubai newspaper Al Bayan.
The paper quoted Foreign Minister Farouk Kaddoumi in an article earlier this week.
The 1993 Oslo accords required Arafat to remove those clauses from the National Covenant.
According to a statement from the Zionist Organization of America, "in April 1996, Arafat's Palestine National Council (PNC) – the only body legally empowered to change the Covenant – passed a resolution appointing a legal committee to consider the changes; but the committee never met. On Dec. 14, 1998, Arafat and President Bill Clinton presided over a meeting in Gaza of Palestinian Arab notables – although it was not a meeting of the PNC – at which the audience raised their hands to signal approval of a statement by Arafat claiming that the Covenant had already been changed in 1996."
Al Bayan reported Kaddoumi as saying "that the PLO adheres to its national charter," which includes clauses that call for Israel's destruction. It also reported that Kaddoumi "praised all types of military operations carried out by the Palestinian resistance fighters against Israelis."
Earlier this year, according to the Zionist Organization of America, a senior official of the Palestine National Council publicly acknowledged that no new version of the Covenant was ever issued. Zuhair Sanduka, the PNC's director of international parliamentary affairs, told the Israeli news agency IMRA on Jan. 23: "No other Charter [Covenant] has indeed been written since . ... There are publications that refer to the decision to make the amendments. But there are no other texts – no other paragraphs or articles in place of those articles that had to be canceled or amended. But there is the reference that there are articles that should be either canceled, modified or amended."
Here are excerpts from the Palestinian National Covenant: