Suha Arafat, the wife of former Palestinian President Yasser Arafat, admitted in an interview with Dubai TV that the late Palestinian leader had premeditated the Second Intifada, confirming a long-held Israeli suspicion.
“Immediately after the failure of the Camp David [negotiations], I met him in Paris upon his return… Camp David had failed, and he said to me, ‘You should remain in Paris.’ I asked him why, and he said, ‘Because I am going to start an Intifada. They want me to betray the Palestinian cause. They want me to give up on our principles, and I will not do so,’” said Suha Arafat, according to a translation by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).
“‘I do not want Zahwah’s [Arafat’s daughter's] friends in the future to say that Yasser Arafat abandoned the Palestinian cause and principles. I might be martyred, but I shall bequeath our historical heritage to Zahwa and to the children of Palestine,’” Suha quoted her late husband as saying.
The Second Intifada lasted approximately five years, from 2000-2005. Palestinian leaders have long held that former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s visit to the Temple Mount in September 2000 set off riots that led to the beginning of the violence. However, Israel maintains that Arafat had planned the uprising following his rejection of an Israeli peace offer at the U.S.-organized Camp David summit in July 2000.