Skip to comments.Exclusive Israeli Interview with Islamic Jihad terrorist Leader (Translation)
Posted on 12/12/2003 10:11:36 AM PST by yonif
Translation from Hebrew to English by me
"But until then the terror attacks will continue. The Jihad will agree to 1967 border, and will continue to resistance from there to liberate all 1948 lands." Head of the Islamic Jihad in an exculsive interview to the Israeli press.
He went underground after the failure of the talks in Cairo. Nafez Azzam in Gaza Strip.
The Shaik Nafez Azzam, one of the leaders of the Islamic Jihad in the Gaza Strip, does not answer phone calls. Since the failure of the hudna talks in Cairo he has been underground, hiding from the Israeli helicopters. Till this day the IDF has eliminated only military activists in the Jihad, but since the elimination of the head of the Popular Front in 2001, and the try to eliminate Rantisi from the Hamas, Shaik Azzam is not taking chances.
Shaik Azzam is competing with Abdullah Shami and Muhhamad Al-Aindi, over the head of the spiritual movement of the Jihad in the Gaza Strip. Like them, he is a partner to the resistance front that Hamas is leading, and like them he is a partner to the competition with Hamas, over who will partake in the next large terror attack. In his last interview to Al Jazeera, Azzam said that the Islamic Jihad is willing to the creation of a "temporary Palestinian state" in the 1967 border, with the capital east Jerusalem. This declaration raised many questions among the Palestinians and even within the Islamic Jihad itself.
The exclusive interview the Shaik Azzam gave to Nana news is the first interview a leader in the Jihad leadership has given to an Israeli media entity.
And how does the Shaik Azaam analyze the situation after the failure of the Cairo talks?
"The talks in Cairo did not fail. We went there with an open head and heart, from a belief in the importance of a dialogue between the Palestinians, from an intention of getting to a formula which would unite the Palestinians in struggle against the occupation, and with a stand against the danger amongst us, mainly because of the pressures being put on by the US which supports the Zionist occupation and its actions on the Palestinian land."
"In addition the US position is strengthened by Arab leaders, so that the Palestinians continue to give up. As a result, we at the Islamic Jihad, believe there is a need to get a united Palestinian stand. I do not think that what happened in Cario will lead to negative consequences towards the Palestinians, like they are declaring in the Palestinian Authority and Egypt. On the opposite, this will lead to move talks amongst ourselves, so that we can liberate the entire Palestinian land.
Is the main reason you didn't get to an agreement was your demand to certify Yasser Arafat to receive political decisions?
"Not at all. The Palestinian Authority did not write up her own agenda. The Fatah delegation, the Egyptians and Abu Ala asked us to do a hudna and to see the PLO and the PA able to make such decisions. We didn't agree to that. We wanted a hudna with conditions, and we stood upon the demand to create a united leadership front that will include all the organizations"
Did you want Arafat to head this new front?
Was there a argument over the number of seats the Jihad and Hamas in the united leadership would get?
"The Islamic Jihad has a known Palestinian position. We didn't ask and we will not ask to join the Authority institutions. We will not tie our position in the number of seats we will get, nor with the political goals of the Palestinian Authority with Israel which are not and will never be our way."
From your words it can be understood that the Islamic Jihad does not recognize the Palestinian government?
"What ever comes from the Oslo agreement - is not accepted by us. We sat with Abu Ala because we are not interested in heat on the Palestinian street. But us and the Palestinian government do not see the same line. Abu Ala's government wants to negotiate with Israel, and we see there is no use. In addition, Abu Ala - like Abu Mazen before him - sat with us in Gaza and congratulated us on our position and our continuing struggle against the Israeli occupation."
If there is no negotiated settlement with Israel possible, what is the solution in your opinion?
"The solution is a united Palestinian front and the continuance of resistance as long as the Zionist occupation continues on the land of Palestine."
Palestinian kids protesting the Geneva Accords.
They talk about that you made a internal agreement to stop the terror attacks at the moment, with coordination from Egypt and the Palestinian Authority.
"I have not heard anything about that. The terror attacks are a defensive operation, and they will continue until the end of the occupation on our land."
If so, why aren't there any terror attack lately?
"I do not deal with the military front. In my opinion Israel is planning on continuing in its own military operations. That is Sharon's interest. The operation in Rafiah proves that. After 6 were killed and many were injured. The Islamic Jihad will not remain quiet and not just itself. All Palestinians will respond. And the continuing Israeli operations is a message to the Palestinian Authority, to Abu Ala, to Egypt and the whole world, concerning who is Israel and what its intentions are."
You are being blamed that you are influenced from outside sources like Syria and Iran
"The Islamic Jihad does not get instructions from anyone. We sketch the plans ourselves. Of course there is contact between the leadership in the territories and the organizational leadership in Syria - headed by Ramdan Salah - to coordinate positions."
In an interview to Nana News Yasser Abed Rabbo said that you, the Hamas, and all those who oppose the Geneva Accords, do not live in reality and potray a old opinion
The Shaik Azaam has a wide smile and answers laughingly: "These things do not potray the dream every Palestinian and Palestinian are apart of. There is not one Palestinian who will approve of these things. We are talking about a coordenation with the American and Israeli political viewpoints, politics that we will never agree to, and we will do everything to bring them down. Our positions are real for the Palestinian nation, which has sacraficed a lot of Shahidim for, and will not allow traitors to exist amongst ourselves. I ask Abed Rabbo - do you think the agreement to continue the occupation and giving up on the right of return will be the solution after all these years of resistance?"
What is your proposal to Yasser Abed Rabbo and the supporters of the Geneva Accords?
"In the end they will lose, and they better stop."
What did the you, Shaik Azaam, mean during the interview by saying, "Palestine" and "Our Land"?
"Our meaning is that Palestine that was in the past be in the future, and even inside the Green Line and the territories. Every place the Zionist enemy sits. All the Palestinian land, including lands of 1948. All the land - and the meaning is ALL THE LAND - that was taken by force more then 50 years ago. With God's will this is our land, and it will return to us. If at the moment we will not be able to get it back, this will not mean we will give it up."
There are some in the Palestinian leadership, like Yasser Araat, that say we should be thinking realistically, and to recognize that there will not be a return to all the places, like Tfat, Aco, Yaffo, Lod.
"I am telling you: They will in the end wake up and stop being influenced from the feeling of defeat. We should all give the support to the Palestinian people so that we can survive and continue the struggle."
"Abu Ala (Palestinian PM) congratulated us on our position and our resistance"
This week you told Al Jazeera that the Islamic Jihad would accept a state in 1967 borders
"If the situation at the moment does not allow us to return all our lands, we will not by principle to the creation of a temporary Palestinian country in 1967 borders, including east Jerusalem, under the condition there will not be one settler, and the security and total control wil be up to the Palestinians. We will not oppose, but the opposite will occur, we will continue to struggle from that country, until we liberate the rest of the land."
In the event a temporary state rises in 1967 borders, will the Jihad join the Palestinian regime?
"The Jihad will not take part in the Palestinian regime, but will support the continuing resistance, and will continue until the Palestinian land is liberated."
In order for a temporary state to rise you will need to negotiate with Israel
"From the past Palestinian experience, it has been proven that negotiation with Israel does not do anything, and that is why we are united in what we said, mainly because there will not be such a country."
Does the Jihad have a connection to Israeli Arabs?
"Our connection is with every Muslim in the world."
Will the Islamic Jihad partake with elections that are supposed to take part next year in the territories?
"We will not take part with anything that results from agreement with Israel"
In the Authority it has been said that the intentions of Hamas and the Islamic Jihad are to give it obstacles and overthrow the Palestinian Authority.
"We are not interested in that, but in parallel our polticial goal is not coordinated with the lines of the Authority and the government. Again, I must underline the appraise that we got from Abu Ala on our strong position and our continuing struggle, and the need for the creation of unison and the prevention of heat on the Palestinian street."
And if you are able to liberate the Palestinian land, what will happen to the Jews here?
"I have no problem with the Jews as a religion and as a nation, but we will not accept them as a political entity in Palestine. History has proven that Jews can live under Islamic rule in security and peace. The Israelis need to understand that whoever occupied and took by force our land will have to leave it, but in parallel we will not have a problem with Jews livling under an Islamic flag." and from this the Shaik Azaam said that "there is no room for two countries for two nations. Israel expelled our ancestors from our land, and no Palestinian inside Israel or outside of it will agree to leave the situation this way. The struggle will continue until the end of days."
"Our connection is with every Muslim in the world."
Muslims need to deny these generalizations but they remain silent for the most part.