Top PLO official Hanan Ashrawi resigns: Reports

Sources say her decision is in protest against the Palestinian Authority’s decision to resume coordination with Israel.

PLO executive committee member Hanan Ashrawi [File: Abbas Momani/AFP]

Hanan Ashrawi, a leading member of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), has resigned, a PLO source told Anadolu Agency on Monday.

Ashrawi, a member of the executive committee of the PLO, submitted her resignation to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in his capacity as the committee’s chairman, said the source, requesting anonymity.

Abbas has yet to approve or reject the resignation, the source added, without disclosing details on what prompted the move.

Al Jazeera made several calls to Ashrawi but did not receive a response at the time of the publication of this report.

Ashrawi, 74, is the Palestinian Authority’s highest-ranking female politician and has been a member of the PLO executive committee since 2009.

She served as the spokeswoman of the Palestinian delegation to the 1991 Madrid Conference and took part in negotiations with Israel.

Reports of her resignation first surfaced on The New Arab news website, which cited sources saying her decision was in protest against the PA’s decision last month to resume coordination with Israel.

The sources told the news outlet Ashrawi was “angry with how the issue was handled”.

Last May, the PA severed all agreements and understandings with Israel after the latter’s plan to annex parts of the occupied West Bank.

However, it resumed coordination activities with Israel in November, after it said the United States had assured Israel would respect the existing agreements with the Palestinians.

The sources also said Ashrawi had asked Abbas if she could leave her position due to personal reasons, after contracting the coronavirus in October.

Source: Al Jazeera and news agencies