Note: Arafat often speaks in a mixture of sentence fragments and run-on sentences in some of his appearances. This was apparent especially in the following remarks. In other words, the syntax is Arafat’s and not the translator’s.

Arafat Speech Broadcast on the Voice of Palestine Radio network:

“[We are] in defense of the holy places to Christianity and to Islam in accordance with the Pact of Omar. And we say no the continuation of occupation in all forms in our land and in our holy places. And we say no to the Judaization of Holy Jerusalem.

They allowed Sharon to pollute the holy shrine of Jerusalem and the blessed Al Aqsa Mosque with thousands of police and soldiers, firing on worshipers. Jerusalem became in all its holy places and all its streets a place for stationing an occupation army. And it [the Israeli government] did the same thing limiting movement, placing a siege on our towns and cities and villages in Gaza and the West Bank-especially Bethlehem. And it prevented passage and transit, closing the international airport.

Our people clings strongly to its faith in Allah [God] and in its perseverance despite 200 martyrs and 9,000 wounded-maybe I should say today reaching 10,000-and despite financial siege causing damages reaching 900-million dollars, a suffocating and frozen siege that has cost us 380,000 worker years: a great economic rift because of what Israel has has forced on us. But in spite of that, our people are determined more than at any time in the past, with the help of our brothers [i.e. fellow Arab states] and our friends to continue on its Jihad for the love of the blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque…

This is a love for what is right, for freedom, for justice, for independence, for liquidating the venality (i.e. bribes) of the tyrannical Israeli occupation in all its violent and destructive forms.

Indeed, our people holds fast to this great national battle, realizing fully the full importance of the great sacrifice in life and in property for the sake of the goal of the Prophet and for its national rights and for protecting the Islamic and Christian holy places. And in this confrontation we are confident of the full help of all the Islamic nations and Arab countries and our friends throughout the world-on our side always in steadfastness in its Jihad and its just battle.”

Summary and Analysis

VOP had opened its broadcasts Sunday with coverage of the hijacking of the Russian plane to Israel, following that item with continued detailed coverage of Palestinian martyrs.

In a somewhat unusual format VOP used its news bulletins and round-ups in the morning hours to broadcast a call by “Islamic and national forces” to all Palestinians to go out to the streets to protest continued Israeli aggression. This was doubly unusual: the call was open and made on several news shows, and it actually placed “Islamic” before “National.” The “national forces” are a reference to Fatah units or followers of Yasser Arafat (and perhaps some “leftist” secular organizations such as the PFLP), while “Islamic forces” connotes followers of Hamas or Islamic Jihad.

Later, VOP broadcasts were largely devoted to live coverage of Yasser Arafat’s speech to the Islamic Summit in Doha, Qatar where Arafat’s remarks were laced with continual references to “jihad.”

Quote of the Day

President Arafat says: “No to Peace Now and no to Peace that sanctifies [Israeli] occupation.”

Opening Headline for Panorama Afternoon News Round-up at 2 p.m.


7 a.m. / 8 a.m. / 9 a.m.:

  • In an operation entitled ‘Operation al-Aqsa,’ a Chechen group has hijacked a Russian plane headed from Dagestan to Moscow and forced it to land at an Israeli airport. Israeli sources said that two Chechens had hijacked the plane with 58 on board forcing it to land at one of the Israeli airports in order to hold a press conference in order to proclaim their position in support of the struggle our Palestinian people against the tyrannical Israeli aggression. According to these sources, Israeli prime minister Ehud Barak has decided to return to Israel after being on his way to Washington, to follow the developments in the hijacking. According to these sources, strong Israeli security measures have been taken on all roads leading to the Ovdat airport in southern Israel. A short time ago, the Russian news agency said that the Dagestani finance minister was on board the hijacked plane;
  • Eight of our citizens were martyred yesterday in battles against Israeli aggression;
  • Masses will gather today for an important national march for seven who were martyred yesterday and their names are: Osama al-Bawab and Majid Radwan from al-Bireh, Ayman Wadi, Musa Dukat, Muhammad al-Madhoum and Mundhir Yasseen from Gaza and Munir Abu-Munshar from Hebron;
  • President Yasser Arafat will deliver an important address shortly at the ninth Islamic summit in Doha, and the His Excellency the President will affirm that our people will continue the blessed Intifada, defending our national rights and holy places until the occupation ends;
  • At the Islamic Summit, Iranian President Hatemi called for a establishing a Palestinian state with Jerusalem its capital and for the return of the refugees to their homes.

Songs of the Day

Jerusalem my city,
return to me, my love
open up the gates

from lead-in to 2 p.m. news

We will die, we will die-all of us
That the homeland shall live

from lead-in to 7 a.m. news