Saeb Erekat Edit Profile
Erekat received a BA and MA in political science at San Francisco State University in the United States, and completed his Ph.D. in peace and conflict studies at Bradford University in England.
He negotiated the Oslo Accords with Israel and remained chief negotiator from 1995 until May 2003, when he resigned in protest from the Palestinian government. He later reconciled with the party and was reappointed to the post in September 2003. On 8 May 2012, he was hospitalized in Ramallah after suffering a heart attack.
After gaining his doctorate in peace studies at Bradford, Erekat returned to the West Bank town of Nablus to lecture in political science at An-Najah National University and also served for 12 years on the editorial board of the widely circulated Palestinian newspaper, Al-Quds. Politics In 1991, Erekat was deputy head of the Palestinian delegation to the Madrid Conference and the subsequent follow-up talks in Washington between 1992 and 1993. Later, in 1994, he was appointed the Minister for Local Government for the Palestinian National Authority and also the Chairman of the Palestinian negotiation delegation.
In 1995, Erekat served as Chief Negotiator for the Palestinians during the Oslo period. He was then elected to the Palestinian Legislative Council in 1996, representing Jericho. As a politician, Erekat was considered to be a Yasser Arafat loyalist. including the Camp David meetings in 2000 and the negotiations at Taba in 2001.
Erekat was also, along with Arafat and Faisal Husseini, one of the three high-ranking Palestinians who asked Ariel Sharon not to visit the Al-Aqsa Mosque in September 2000, an event which Palestinians claim sparked off the Second Intifada. He also acted as Yasser Arafat's English interpreter. When Mahmoud Abbas was nominated to serve as Prime Minister of the Palestinian Legislative Council in early 2003, Erekat was slated to be Minister of Negotiations in the new cabinet, but he soon resigned after he was excluded from a delegation to meet Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon.
This was interpreted as part of an internal Palestinian power struggle between Abbas and Arafat. Erekat was later reappointed to his post and participated in the 2007 Annapolis Conference, where he took over from Ahmed Qurei during an impasse and helped hammer out a joint declaration. He resigned from his post as chief negotiator on 12 February 2011 citing the release of the Palestine Papers.
In July 2013, however, he was still holding the function. Legacy Erekat is one of the more prominent Palestinian spokespeople in the Western media. During the Second Intifada, he loudly criticized Israeli actions and together with other sources characterized the IDF's 2002 assault in the Palestinian town of Jenin as a "massacre" and a "war crime", alleging that Israel has killed more than 500 Palestinians in the Jenin refugee camp.
After the incident was over and the Palestinian death toll was recorded at between 53 and 56 casualties, Erekat faced criticism from pro-Israeli elements in the US. Works (partial list).
Married Naim'ah Erekat. Children: Salam, Dalal, Ali Saeb, Mohammed.
1994 - 2003
2003 - 2005