Arab World Figures Call on Arafat to “Pack His Bags” 

Editors, writers, and political commentators throughout the Arab world have stepped up their calls on Arafat to step aside, holding him responsible for widespread corruption and disasters that have plagued the Palestinians over the past three decades, THE JERUSALEM POST reported. Dr. Ibrahim Hamami, a Palestinian writer living in London, has joined the chorus of Arafat critics in one of the most scathing attacks yet on the PA chairman.

Hamami, in an open letter to Arafat published on the Palestinian Web site Falasteen, urged Arafat to pack his bags and leave together with all his “corrupt cronies.” Hamami said Arafat’s “disastrous” policies have led the Palestinians from one catastrophe to another. “Tens of thousands of Palestinians have been killed in Lebanon and Jordan and now in Palestine because of your systematic corruption ever since you came to power in 1968,” he added, addressing Arafat.

Veteran Palestinian legislator Hanan Ashrawi called on Arafat to end his “one-man show” in the PA and warned of more unrest in Gaza as weapons flow into the Strip. “As long as he controls the security forces, he is breaking the fundamental law,” Ashrawi, a prominent Palestinian Christian, said in an interview in the Swiss newspaper SonntagsBlick. “We should put this one-man-show behind us,” Ashrawi said. “Instead of talking about (individual) people, we should at last be talking about institutions and laws.”