Nayef Hawatmeh, head of the Marxist-Leninist Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP), announced Thursday that he will move to the Gaza Strip after Israel completes its withdrawal.
Hawatmeh, who is based in Damascus, is the first leader of a radical Palestinian group to announce his intention to move to Gaza after disengagement. The leaders of Hamas, Islamic Jihad and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) have also reportedly expressed their desire to move to the Gaza Strip.
"I will return to the Gaza Strip after a full Israeli withdrawal from the area," Hawatmeh said. "The borders of Gaza will be open to any Palestinian wishing to return to Palestine."
He said representatives of various Palestinian groups will meet in Amman or Cairo shortly to discuss the planned withdrawal and the unofficial truce with Israel.
Founded in 1969, the DFLP is the third largest PLO faction.
The DFLP’s first rose to infamy when it carried out a horrendous attack on Israeli school children in Ma’a lot, Israel in 1974. Apparently, Hawatmeh, a Jordanian born Christian, has spoken out against suicide bombing inside Israel. As far as I can determine no one has yet asked his opinion on raids on sleeping children, the hijacking of school buses, or the seizing of apartment buildings.