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Newspaper UNO
Mendoza – May 22, 2002

“Our defence is a legitimate one”, the Palestinian Ambassador expressed (view)

Suhail Akel yesterday visited the Legislature and he gave an emotive speech during a session at the Senate.

By Juan Carlos Albornoz From UNO staff

The visit of the Ambassador of the Palestine National Authority in Argentina, Suhail Hani Daher Akel, to the Legislature caused some changes on the agenda of legislators for just some minutes.

In an uncommon event, the Ambassador was invited to take part in a session at the Upper Chamber enclosure. Standing up, next to Vice-governor Juan Horacio Gonzalez Gaviola, he gave an emotive speech in which he claimed for the help of “our friends” in order for the Palestinian people to achieve their independence of Israel.

Some senators got more excited than other ones about his visit. One of the most effusive senators was Alfredo Guevara, a senator from Polo Social party, who effusively applauded as soon as the Ambassador was introduced.

Out of context, Guevara has maybe spoken of international causes at the Mendoza Legislature several times. But he received an unexpected recompense yesterday: the Palestinian Ambassador thanked him for a declaration project where the senator publicly expressed his solidarity towards the Palestinian cause.

In spite of the fact that his security guards established a narrow siege during his visit to the Mendoza Legislature, Daher Akel had an animated conversation with journalists.

At the press conference, he accused the Israeli government of stimulating the “ethnic cleansing” of Palestinians. “It cannot create a free country next to another one which is submitted and dispossessed”, he stated.

Akel also criticized the United States. According to the diplomat, “it has had very little interest in reaching a concurrence between the Palestinian and Israeli people”.

With regard to this, the Ambassador categorically denied that his people might be a threat to the United States, where the phantoms of terrorist attacks are revived one time more.

We have no reason to threaten anybody. We have no war or destructive power. We have stones to face F-16 planes, Apache helicopters and gases”, he assured.

In his claim for the achievement of “the peace of the braves” of the Palestinian people, the diplomat told the difference between his fellow-citizens’ attacks and Israel’s “State terrorism”.

Nothing can justify violence and the attacks. President Yasser Arafat has condemned terrorism. But our defence is a legitimate one, not a terrorist one”, Daher Akel stated.

Photo: Standing up, with Vice-governor Juan Horacio Gonzalez Gaviola on his right-hand side, the Palestinian Ambassador claimed for the help of “our friends” in order for the Palestinian people to achieve their independence.


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