With peace talks on the verge of collapse, Palestinian Authority and Fatah representatives gathered to inaugurate a West Bank forest named for arch-terrorist Abu Jihad.
The March 30 event at Martyr Khalil Al-Wazir Forest was attended by dozens of officials, including Minister of Agriculture Walid Assaf, District Governor of Hebron Kamel Hamid and representatives of the PA Security Forces, as well as several mayors from the Hebron district and relatives of Abu Jihad, Palestinian Media Watch said in a bulletin Sunday.
Abu Jihad, also known as Khalid al-Wazir, was a founding member of Fatah and a deputy to Yasser Arafat. He led the PLO’s military wing, and was responsible for numerous terror attacks that according to PA daily Al-Ayyam killed at least 125 Israelis. His facilitation of the 1978 Coastal Road massacre — the hijacking of a bus that resulted in 37 Israeli deaths, including 12 children — made him one of the most wanted Palestinian terrorists in the world.
Abu Jihad’s son, Jihad Al-Wazir, told the crowd, “All of you are martyr Abu Jihad’s children, and he is freedom in the memories and hearts of every one of you.”
According to Palestinian Media Watch, PA President Mahmoud Abbas also recently decorated Abu Jihad posthumously with “the highest order of the Star of Honor.”
Abu Jihad was assassinated in 1988 in Tunisia. It is widely suspected that Israeli agents carried out the act, but Israel has never acknowledged a role in his death.