Jerusalem24 – Fatah Central Committee member and lawmaker, Marwan Barghouti, today began his 20th year in Israeli imprisonment.
Barghouti, 62, a resident of the Ramallah district town of Kobar, is the first Fatah Central Committee member and lawmaker to be detained by the Israeli forces and sentenced to five life sentences for his role in the Palestinian resistance movement.
Barghouti was only 15 years old when he was arrested for the first time in 1976 and 17 years when arrested for the second time in 1978. In 1983, he started his education in Birzeit University, where he was elected president of the Student Council for three years in a row, and co-founder the Fatah Youth Movement before being arrested for several weeks in 1984 and for 50 days in 1985, when he was subject to harsh interrogation and subject to administrative detention. He was detained and forced into exile in 1986.
He was elected as a member of the Fatah Revolutionary Council in 1989. In April 1994, he returned to the occupied West Bank after the Oslo Accords were signed between the PLO and Israel, and was elected as a deputy for leading Fatah official, Faisal Husseini, and as the Secretary-General of Fatah in the West Bank. In 1996, he was elected a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC).
On April 15, 2002, he was arrested during the Israeli invasion of the West Bank and was subjected to months of torture, including spending more than 1,000 days in solitary confinement.
In 2004, an Israeli court sentenced him to five life terms plus 40 years.
Over the past few years, he has published a number of books including “1,000 nights in solitary confinement”.