QADDUMI, Faruk (Abu Lutof)

Palestinian politician born in 1930 near Nablus (West Bank). After his studies in petroleum engineering in Egypt, Faruq Qaddumi worked with Yasser Arafat. A founding member of Fatah, he has been a member of the Executive Committee of the PLO since 1969, and chief of the Political Department (Foreign Affairs) of the PLO since 1974.

Since then he has developed contacts with many Western countries, seeking the recognition of the PLO as sole representative of the Palestinian people. He succeeded in obtaining the opening of PLO offices in many European capitals and the granting of diplomatic status for its representatives. Of all the members of the PLO Executive Committee he is the most anti-American; he also has excellent relations with the Iraqi and the Syrian governments.

As he opposed the agreement with Israel, he refused to sign the Declaration of Principles on behalf of the PLO in September 1993 (see « Oslo peace process »). He was replaced by Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen) who is in charge of relations between the PLO and the Arab world. He did not resign however (as he did once before, between January and April 1973).

In May 1994, he turned down the offer to become minister in the newly created Palestinian National Authority (PNA). Nonetheless, he was appointed director of the Palestinian Economic Council for Development and Reconstruction (PECDAR)(see also Ahmed Qureï) by Yasser Arafat. Very critical of the Oslo Agreements, he is a consistent opponent to Yasser Arafat within Fatah. He still refuses to return to any of the autonomous Palestinian territories where he would anyway be considered a persona non grata because of his extremely anti-Israeli declarations.