'Palestinian Spring' protests urged

Jan. 7, 2013 at 6:13 AM

RAMALLAH, West Bank, Jan. 7 (UPI) -- Imprisoned Fatah leader Marwan Barghouti called for West Bank and Gaza "Palestinian Spring" protests to force Fatah and Hamas political leaders to reconcile.

Barghouti, serving five life sentences in Israel for his role in terrorist activities, urged the protests in a letter distributed by his political office, the Palestinian Ma'an News Agency reported Sunday.

He called for a "Palestinian Spring."

"Youth of all persuasions in the West Bank, Gaza and Diaspora should hold sit-ins in front of party headquarters until the split is ended," he wrote. "Neither history, nor the people, nor martyrs or prisoners of any party will forgive any leader who puts obstacles in the way of national reconciliation."

Barghouti was arrested by Israeli soldiers in 2002 in Ramallah and tried in Israel. He was accused of being one of the ringleaders of the second intifada and was charged with the murders of Israeli civilians and soldiers killed in Palestinian terror attacks.

Since his incarceration he has continued to exert influence on Fatah from his jail cell, observers say.

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