PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat met with Syrian President Hafez al-Assad in Damascus. The meeting was attended, on the Palestinian side, by Khalid al-Fahoum, President of the Palestinian National Congress and PLO Executive Committee members Abdel Muhsin Abu Maizar, Yasser Abed Rabbo, Talal Naji, Abu Maher al-Yamani, Muhammad Zuhdi al-Nashashibi and Hamed Abu Sitta; and on the Syrian side by Deputy Premier and Foreign Minister Abdel Halim Khaddam. The meeting focused on the latest developments in all their aspects.
Arafat received a letter from Albanian President Enver Hoxha, in answer to his message of congratulations on the President's re-election as Secretary General of the Albanian Workers' Party and on the 40th anniversary of the Party's foundation.
Hoxha thanked Arafat for his warm wishes, and reiterated the Albanian people's full support for and solidarity with the just and heroic struggle of the Palestinian people against Zionism and imperialism and to realize their national goals and regain their legitimate rights.
Arafat received a cable from the President of Mali, Moussa Traore, on the occasion of the New Year.
The Mali President affirmed his country's stand in support of the struggle of the Palestinian people, and their right to return, self-determination and establish their independent state on their national soil.
Yasser Arafat received a cable from Soviet President Leonid Brezhnev thanking Arafat for his message of congratulations to the Soviet leader on his 75th birthday.
In the cable, which was handed to Arafat by the Soviet Charge d' Affaires in Beirut, Brezhnev wished Arafat and the Palestinian people more victories and the realization of their national goals.
He also wished the Palestinian people courage and the PLO new successes in its struggle to realize national liberation and the establishment of an independent state, and for the sake of a just peace in the Middle East.
Arafat met with the General Secretary of the Arab League Chadli al-Qleibi, in the presence of the Arab League's representative in Lebanon, Mahmoud al-Ma'mouri, and Fateh Central Committee member Abu al-Walid.
The meeting dealt with the situation in south Lebanon, in the light of the Israeli military build-up, and with the Fez Summit resolution concerning Lebanon and means of implementing it. The two sides also discussed the situation in the area and the current development in the Palestinian and Arab arenas and ways of consolidating Arab solidarity.
PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat met with a parliamentary delegation from Holland. The delegation, consisting of eight members of the Parliamentary Defence Committee, and headed by a representative of the Dutch Labour Party, included representatives of the Christian Democratic Party, the Liberal Party, the Democratic Party, and the Christian Reformist Party.
The meeting was attended by Fateh Central Committee member Abu al-Walid, Sakhr (Abu Nizar), Secretary of the Fateh Revolutionary Council, Abu Jaafar, Director of the PLO Political Department and Mahmoud Labadi, head of the PLO Foreign Information Department.
Arafat briefed the delegation on the latest developments of the situation in all its aspects, and in particular the suffering of the Palestinian people under occupation.
Arafat said: "The suffering of our people can be compared to that of Jews and Europeans under Nazism."
He added: "We have the right to ask you and request of you that you study our tragedy and sufferings in depth, because you represent the people of Holland. We are not against the Jews on the Jewish religion. We have proposed to live together with them in a democratic state, but they refused. We demand that international law and resolutions be implemented. It is our right to resist occupation and arrogance, and we will continue to resist them...
"We are patient and our people have been patient for a long time. The logic of might cannot last forever, and right will be victorious no matter how long it takes."
Arafat received the Moroccan Ambassador to Lebanon who handed him a letter and photograph album from King Hassan II. Fateh Revolutionary Council member Abu al-Zaim also attended the two-hour meeting.
Arafat met with the Indian Ambassador to Lebanon, with whom he discussed the latest developments on the Arab and international levels, particularly the situation in south Lebanon.
Arafat sent a telegram to Algerian President Chadli Ben Jedid, offering condolences on the assassination of Rabah Kheroua, Minister Plenipotentiary at the Algerian Embassy in Lebanon.
Yasser Arafat met for one hour with a French parliamentary delegation from the French National Assembly.
The delegation, which was on a fact-finding mission here, was headed by Louis Odru of the French Communist Party, and included Francois d'Harcourt, a member of Parliament representing the party of former President Giscard d'Estaing (UDF).
Arafat briefed the delegation on the latest developments of the situation in the Middle East, in the light of the Israeli military build-up in south Lebanon, as well as the continuing threats to the Palestinian Revolution and the Lebanese National Movement. Arafat affirmed to the delegation that the Palestinian Revolution was determined to carry on its resistance to occupation, and affirmed that the Revolution will not surrender because of these threats.
He also referred to the regressions in the European position on the Palestine cause, and spoke of the U.S. schemes against the Palestinian people.
The French delegation in turn expressed understanding of the Palestinian position and of the need to establish a Palestinian state as a basis for any settlement of the Middle East conflict.
Yasser Arafat visited the offices of the Lebanese Press Syndicate to offer condolences on the death of the Syndicate's late president Farid Abu Shahla.
Arafat told the members of the Syndicate that Abu Shahla had been one of the most outstanding defenders of the Palestinian Revolution since its inception, and that he had died in defence of the freedom of expression.
The General Union of Palestinian Writers and Journalists (Lebanon branch) for its part issued a statement mourning the death of the Lebanese Press Syndicate head Farid Abu Shahala.
Chairman Arafat received a cable of congratulations from Souphanouvong, President of the People's Democratic Republic of Laos, in reply to Arafat's congratulations on the sixth anniversary of the establishment of the Laos Republic. The President reaffirmed his country's support for the Palestine cause, and the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people, including their right to establish an independent state.
PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat received the Cuban Deputy Foreign Minister, in the presence of the Cuban Ambassador to Lebanon and Farouk Kaddoumi, Head of the PLO Political Department.
The Cuban Deputy Foreign Minister handed Arafat a letter from Cuban President Fidel Castro dealing with the international situation and Cuba's firm stand on the Palestine question and the Palestinian people's rights.
Discussions also covered the forthcoming meeting of the Coordination Bureau of the Non-Aligned States regarding the Palestine question.
PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat received a special message from the President of Sierra Leone Siaka Stevens. The letter was handed to Arafat by a personal envoy of President Stevens.
Arafat briefed the envoy on the latest developments in the Arab region. with particular reference to the Palestine cause.
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Originally published by The Palestine Liberation Organisation Unified Information as a bi-monthly information bulletin with copy permission granted via the notice "Partial or total reproduction is freely permitted by 'Palestine Bulletin'"
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