Palestinian National Council Declaration of Independence (November 14, 1988)

Reference: Arab Thought Forum

Meeting in Algiers, the PNC accepted the new policy of Arafat and called for the
convening of an international peace conference for the Middle East, under the
auspices of the Security Council and based on resolutions 242 and 338 and the
assurance of the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people. They also renounced
terrorism but accepted the right of people to fight against foreign occupation. It also
called for the continuation of the intifada. The document proclaimed the
independence of Palestine without defining its borders with Jerusalem as its capital.
Texts of the declaration of independence and the PNC political resolution follow:

In the valiant land of Algeria, hosted by its people and its president, Chedli Benjedid,
the Palestine National Council held its 19th extraordinary session – the session of the
intifada and independence, the session of the martyred hero Abu Jihad – in the
period between the 12th and 15th of November, 1988.

 
The session culminated in the announcement of the rise of the Palestinian state in
our Palestinian land, the natural climax of a daring and tenacious popular struggle
than started more than 70 years ago and was baptized in the immense sacrifices
offered by our people in our homeland, along its borders, and in the camps and other
sites of our diaspora.

 
The session was also distinguished by its focus on the great national Palestinian
intifada as one of the major milestones in the contemporary history of the Palestinian
people’s revolution, on a par with the legendary steadfastness of our people in their
camps in our occupied land and outside it.

 
The primary features of our great people’s intifada were obvious from its inception
and have become clearer in the 12 months since then during which it has continued
unabated. It is a total popular revolution that embodies the consensus of an entire
nation – women and men, old and young, in the camps, the villages and the cities –
on the rejection of the occupation and on the determination to struggle until the
occupation is defeated and terminated.

 
The glorious intifada has demonstrated our people’s deeply rooted national unity and
their full adherence to the Palestine Liberation Organization, the sole legitimate
representative of our people, all our people, wherever they congregate – in our
homeland or outside it. This was manifested by the participation of the Palestinian
masses – their unions, their vocational organizations, their students, their workers,
their farmers, their women, their merchants, their landlords, their artisans, their
academics – in the intifada through its Unified National Command, the Popular
Committees that were formed in the urban neighborhoods, the villages and the
camps.

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