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Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP). By: Daniel Alejandro Brandon Halsey Renee Lavoie Ivan Sanchez. History of PFLP.

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popular front for the liberation of palestine pflp

Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP)


Daniel Alejandro

Brandon Halsey

Renee Lavoie

Ivan Sanchez

history of pflp
History of PFLP
  • At one time affiliated with the PLO, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) is a Marxist-Leninist group founded in 1967 by George Habash.
  • The PFLP joined the Alliance of Palestinian Forces (APF) to oppose the Declaration of Principles signed in 1993 and suspended participation in the PLO.
  • The PFLP broke away from the APF, along with the DFLP, in 1996 over ideological differences. PFLP officers took part in meetings with Arafat's Fatah party and PLO representatives in 1999 to discuss national unity and the reinvigoration of the PLO but the PFLP continues to oppose currentnegotiations with Israel.
history of pflp cont
History of PFLP Cont.
  • The PFLP does not view the Palestinian struggle as religious, seeing it instead as a broader revolution against Western imperialism.
  • The PFLP is estimated to have approximately 800 members, and has operated in Syria, Lebanon, Israel, West Bank, and Gaza.
  • The group earned a reputation for spectacular international attacks, including airline hijackings, that have killed at least 20 U.S. citizens.
  • Based on the ideology continuum the PFLP is a Radical Left-Wing Palestinian guerrilla group.
george habash
George Habash
  • Habash was a medical student at the American University in Beirut.
  • Founder of PFLP in 1967
  • in 1974 Habash was to lead the PFLP and the PLO to join the rejectionist front
  • Habash remained at the head of the PFLP and forged ties with other leftist groups outside Palestine such as the German Baader-Meinhoff group, the Irish Republican Army (IRA), and the Japanese Red Army
  • In the Late 1990s Habash stepped down as the Leader of the PFLP and was succeeded by Abu Ali Mustafa
  • Still active in PFLP internal politics
abu ali mustafa
Abu Ali Mustafa
  • Mustafa had been a founding member of the PLO and a member of its Executive Committee.
  • After taking over in 2000, he moved PFLP headquarters from Syria to Ramallah in the West Bank and began organizing attacks on Israeli targets there.
  • After learning that Mustafa and the PFLP intended to carry out attacks on Israeli schools and other civilian areas, Israeli authorities bombed his office, killing him and several others.
ahmad saadat
Ahmad Saadat
  • Ahmad Saadat then became head of the PFLP; he was associated with the assassination of Rehavam Zeevi, Israel's tourism minister, and in April 2002 was sentenced to one year in prison for taking part in the assassination.
  • Although the courts later ruled in favor of his release, continued PFLP attacks have prevented this.
wadi haddad
Wadi Haddad
  • Haddad was born to Greek Orthodox parents in Safad, in what is today northern Israel, in 1927.
  • He studied medicine at The American University of Beirut, where he met fellow Palestinian refugee George Habash. Together they helped found the Arab Nationalist Movement (ANM), a Pan Arab and Arab Socialist grouping aiming to reestablish Palestine in the place of Israel and unite the Arab world.
  • After graduating, he relocated with Habash (a paediatrician) to Amman, Jordan, where they established a clinic.
leila khaled
Leila Khaled
  • Leila Khaled long-time activist and Central Committee member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), was born on 9 April 1944 in Haifa, Palestine.
  • Khaled joined a Lebanese cell of the Arab Nationalists Movement (ANM) in 1958. She was a student and activist at the American University of Beirut (AUB) in 1962 to 1963, but left because of financial difficulties and was employed as a teacher in Kuwait for a number of years.
  • Khaled became infamous when she and a male colleague hijacked a TWA airplane headed for Tel Aviv on 29 August 1969, forcing the flight to land in Damascus, where they blew it up after emptying it of passengers.
external aid gamal abdul nasser
External Aid:Gamal Abdul Nasser
  • Second president of Egypt
  • Major financial backer for the PFLP
  • Financial and military support are said to come from Syria and Libya, and in 1999, Iranian president Mohammad Khatami promised to continue Iran's support of not only the PFLP, but also the PFLP-GC, Islamic Jihad, and HAMAS.
  • In addition to outside support, the PFLP has financed its activities from front companies as well as legitimate business activities.
activities of the pflp
Activities of the PFLP
  • The PFLP committed numerous international terrorist attacks during the 1970’s.
  • Since 1978, the group has conducted attacks against Israeli and moderate Arab targets, including the killing of an Israeli settler and her son in December 1996.
  • The PFLP has stepped up its operational activity since the start of the current intifada, highlighted by at least two suicide bombings since 2003, multiple joint operations with other Palestinian terrorist groups, and the assassination of the Israeli Tourism Minster in 2001 to avenge Israel’s killing of the PFLP Secretary General earlier that year.
major events
Major Events
  • The hijacking of an El Al flight from Rome to Lod airport in Israel on July 23, 1968.
  • The Western media reported that the flight was targeted because the PFLP believed Israeli general Yitzhak Rabin, who was Israeli ambassador to the US, was on board.
  • Several individuals involved with the hijacking, including Leila Khaled deny this.
  • The plane was diverted to Algiers, where 21 passengers and 11 crew members were held for 39 days, until August 31
major events cont
Major Events Cont.
  • On September 6, 1970, the PFLP (including Leila Khaled) hijacked four passenger aircraft from Pan Am, TWA and Swissair on flights to New York from Brussels, Frankfurt and Zürich; and on September 9, 1970, hijacked a BOAC flight from Bahrain to London via Beirut.
  • The Pan Am flight was diverted to Cairo; the TWA, Swissair and BOAC flights were diverted to Dawson's Field in Zarqa, Jordan.
  • The TWA, Swissair and BOAC aircraft were subsequently blown up by the PFLP on September 12, in front of the world media, after all passengers had been taken off the planes.
  • The event is significant, as it was cited as a reason for to the Black September clashes between Palestinian and Jordanian forces.
major events cont13
Major Events Cont.
  • Attack on a bus containing El Al passengers at Munich airport, killing one passenger and wounding 11 on February 10, 1970;
  • The killing of Meir Lixenberg, councillor and head of security in four settlements, who was shot while travelling in his car in the West Bank on August 27, 2001. PFLP claimed that this was a retaliation for the killing of Abu Ali Mustafa.
  • October 21, 2001 Israeli Minister for Tourism Rehavam Zeevi was assassinated. He was the only Israeli politician to have been assassinated in the current intifada.
  • A suicide bombing in the bus station at Geha Junction in Petah Tikva on 25 December, 2003 which killed 4 Israelis.
  • In Tel Aviv on November 1, 2004. PFLP set off a car bomb in the Carmel Market
general facts
General Facts
  • In 1970 the PFLP split into three groups:
    • The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP)
    • the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP)
    • Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine - General Command (PFLP-GC)
  • The PFLP was founded from the following three groups:
    • Heroes of the Return
    • The National Front for the Liberation of Palestine
    • The Independent Palestine Liberation Front
  • Martin, G. (2003). Understanding Terrorism: Challenges, Perspectives, and Issues (2nd Edition). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
  • U.S. Department of State. Chapter 5- Country Reports: Middle East and North Africa Overview. County Reports on Terrorism. 28 April 2006 http://www.state.gov/s/ct/rls/crt/2005/64344.htm
  • U.S. Department of State. Chapter 8- Foreign Terrorist Organizations. County Reports on Terrorism. 28 April 2006 http://www.state.gove/s/ct/rls/crt/2005/65275.htm
  • www.answers.com
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