Palestine leader here tomorrow for talks with President
COLOMBO: President of the State of Palestine Mahmoud Reda Abbas will
arrive here tomorrow for talks with President Mahinda Rajapaksa.
Abbas who is also the Chairman of the Executive Committee of the PLO
and President of the Palestinian National Authority was born in 1935 in
Safad in the Upper North of Palestine.
He was obliged to immigrate to Syria after the occupation of Safad by
the Zionist organisations in April 1948.
At the age of 13, he started to work for two years to assist his
family. He went back to school and finished his primary level, and start
working as a teacher. He continued his studies by distance and obtained
the secondary level degree and joined the Damascus University and got
his Bachelors Degree in Law in 1958.
From 1957 to 1970, he was appointed as the Director of the employee’s
affairs at the Ministry of Education of Qatar, during which he visited
the West Bank and Gaza Strip many times to choose teachers to work in
In the mid 50s, he established with a group of his colleagues a
secret national organisation which founded FATEH (the Palestinian
National Freedom Movement) and in 1970 he completely delegated himself
for the national work.
Abbas received his PhD Degree from the Oriental Institute of Moscow
In recognition of his national leading role, President Abbas assumed
many responsibilities such as Member of the Central Committee of FATAH
from 1964, Secretary General of the Executive Committee of PLO 1996,
Head of the Department of the nationalist and international relations of
the PLO 1984-2000 and Head of the Palestinian - Jordanian committee from
1979. He also successfully established the project of twining the
Palestinian cities with their Arab cities.
He also proposed to establish contacts with the Israeli peace
movements in 1970.
Internationally, President Abbas presented PLO in numerous official
He signed on behalf of the PLO the Oslo agreement in Washington on
September 13, 1993 and also signed on behalf of the PLO the Interim
agreement in Washington on September 23, 1995.
Nationally, he assumed many responsibilities: The head of the
Negotiations Affairs Department until 2003, established after
Gaza-Jericho agreement in 1994; headed the first Palestinian elections
committee between 1996 and 2002; the first Prime Minister for the
Palestinian National Authority in April 2004; elected chairman of the
PLO in 2004 and elected third President of the Palestinian National
Authority in 2004 direct free elections.
President Abbas was the author of numerous books and studies
including The fall of Netanyahu Government 2000, The religious and
ethnic polarisation in Israel 1998, The way to Oslo 1994, The other face
1984, The evilness bridge 1984 and Zionism: beginning and end 1972.
President Abbas is married to Amina Abbas and have three sons, the
late Mazen, Yasser and Tarek and several grandsons.