During a seminar titled "The Role of Palestinians Abroad in the Unified National Project," specialists stressed the importance of Palestinians abroad having an effective role in the Palestinian situation, participating in the National Council and the institutions of the Liberation Organization (PLO), as well as in confronting the liquidation projects, such as the deal of the century, normalization and annexation plans.
The seminar is part of the “Priorities of the Palestinian Cause in the Upcoming Phase and the Anticipated Role of Palestinians Abroad” conference organized by the Popular Conference for Palestinians Abroad (PCPA) today in Istanbul.
Halloum: I call for dismantling the current authority and the election of a national council that represents Palestinians inside and outside the country
On the role of the diaspora within the framework of the Palestinian national movement and its institutions, the former Palestinian ambassador, Dr. Rebhi Halloum, stressed the importance of restructuring the Palestinian National Council under the supervision of a Palestinian collective leadership that leads the transitional phase and its struggle tools through free elections for all segments of the Palestinian people at home and abroad.
Halloum criticized the policy of Palestinian Authority’s President Mahmoud Abbas regarding adherence to the Oslo Accords, the continuation of the Palestinian division, the elections and the blockade imposed on Gaza Strip.
Halloum also called for dismantling of the Palestinian Authority and the election of a national council that represents Palestinians inside and outside the country first and then conducting legislative and presidential elections. Additionally, he called for holding Palestinian conferences around the world to come up with a Palestinian leadership worthy of administrating the current phase.
Shadid: The challenges facing the Palestinian issue gave us new opportunities, such as the Popular Conference for Palestinians Abroad
The strategic researcher Dr. Wael Shedid discussed in his paper the opportunities and challenges facing the role of the Palestinian diaspora, stressing that the obstacles that the Palestinian issue is going through, especially the Israeli annexation projects, have offered new opportunities to escape “the current stalemate, as it introduced new initiatives such as the popular conference.”
"Dealing with this opportunity at the heart of this challenge requires a different way of thinking that moves towards forming a specific and clear action vision that uses new work tools that were not used in the past. It also requires the development of a new method and structure in harmony with this opportunity away from the complexity of regulations and parties.”
To confront the annexation projects, Shadid called for the launch of a unified Palestinian popular movement abroad, in addition to the movement of Palestinians in Jordan, rejecting annexation and resettlement, and mobilizing the Arab and Islamic masses and advocates of the Palestinian cause against the Israeli settlement policy.
"A new initiative must be launched to address the young Palestinian generation and those under the age of 40 years, as this category is the basis for any future work, and the Popular Conference for Palestinians Abroad should invite the popular, national, cultural, scientific, political and economic Palestinian components to form an initiative that invites the current president of the National Council to hold a meeting, in which all the factional and independent Palestinian components, gatherings, and so forth, are represented, provided that a deadline of three months is given to meet this, and in the event of failure to respond, all Palestinians abroad will call to form a Palestinian National Assembly.”
According to Shadid, the "Palestinian National Assembly" initiative does not constitute a substitute for the Palestine Liberation Organization, "but shall the doors of the organization and the Palestinian National Council be opened, the representatives of the national assembly abroad would be members of the organization.”
Shalaby: There must be an official action by Palestinians abroad, with a focus on public diplomacy
Addressing the role of the Palestinian diaspora at the official, regional and international level, Bashar Shalaby, member of the PCPA’s General Assembly, provided statistics and figures on the Palestinian presence abroad, pointing to the importance of the role of Palestinian youth.
Shalaby also touched on the capabilities that the Palestinian people have in the diaspora, which enable them to confront the Israeli occupation in the human rights and international aspects, mobilize support for the Palestinian cause and confront normalization.
In his paper, he also called for the need to focus on popular diplomacy and the formation of lobbies that affect the official circles of countries and the international community and support the Palestinian narrative in confronting the Israeli one.
Msheinesh: I call for rebuilding the institutions of the PLO and paying attention to Palestinian civil work
Mr. Mohammed Msheinesh, President of the Turkish Association for Solidarity with Palestine, spoke in his paper about the role of Palestinian civil society organizations in the diaspora regionally and internationally, referring to the reality of Palestinian civil society abroad since before the signing of Oslo Accords up to this day.
Mechinch touched on the importance of Palestinian civil society organizations and their role in preserving the Palestinian identity, achieving integration between the various Palestinian stances abroad and overcoming the obstacles of Palestinian division.
He also noted the importance of Palestinian institutions in mobilizing energies and competencies to serve the Palestinian cause, and establishing activities supportive and in solidarity with the Palestinian people at home.
He talked about the role of Palestinian organizations in channelling the reality of what is happening against the Palestinian people to the various societies and countries where the Palestinian people reside, working to form lobbies in support of the Palestinian cause, and providing political and legal support to the Palestinians at home.