Saeb Muhammad Salih Erekat (also Erikat or Erakat or Arekat; Arabic:
صائب عريقات Ṣāʼib ʻUrayqāt or ʻRēqāt; born 28
April 1955) is a Palestinian diplomat who served as chief of the PLO
Steering and Monitoring Committee until 12 February 2011. He
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.
1 Personal life and education
2.3 Works (partial list)
3 See also
5 External links
Personal life and education
Erekat was born in Abu Dis,. He is a member of the
Palestinian branch of the Erekat family, itself a branch of the
Howeitat tribal confederation. Erekat is one of seven children,
with his brothers and sisters living outside of
Israel or the
In 1972, Erekat moved to San Francisco, California, in the United
States to attend college. He spent two years at City College of San
Francisco, a two-year community college. He then transferred to San
Francisco State University. There, Erekat received a BA in
international relations (in 1977) and an MA in political science (in
1979). He completed his
Ph.D. in peace and conflict studies at
Bradford University, a public, plate glass university in England (in
1983). He is married and is father of twin daughters and two
On 8 May 2012, he was hospitalized in
Ramallah after suffering a heart
In October 2017 he had a lung transplant at
Inova Fairfax Hospital
Inova Fairfax Hospital in
northern Virginia, in the United States.
After gaining his doctorate in England, Erekat moved to the West Bank
Nablus to lecture in political science at An-Najah National
University and also served for 12 years on the editorial board of the
locally widely circulated Palestinian newspaper, Al-Quds.
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. In 1994, he was appointed the Minister for
Local Government for the
Palestinian National Authority
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
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
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 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.
Erekat is one of the more prominent Palestinian spokespeople in the
During the Second Intifada, he loudly criticized Israeli actions and
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, however, and the Palestinian death toll was
recorded at actually be between 53 and 56 casualties, mostly
combatants, Erekat faced strong criticism in the US.
Works (partial list)
Imam Ali Bin Abi Taleb and Negotiations (2015)
^ "Saeb Erekat". Palestinian Biographies. lawrenceofcyberia.blogs.com.
Retrieved 5 August 2017.
^ a b John Pike. "Saeb Erekat". Globalsecurity.org. Retrieved 5 August
^ a b c d e f 'Politics in Palestine', Palestinian National Authority:
The PA Ministerial Cabinet List Emergency Cabinet, October 2003 –
November 2003 Archived 15 August 2007 at the Wayback Machine.,
Jerusalem Media and Communication Centre.
^ "عائلة-عريقات" [family Erekat] (in Arabic). rabettah.net.
Retrieved 5 August 2017.
^ "Chief Palestinian Negotiator Saeb Erekat: Abu Mazen Rejected the
Israeli Proposal in Annapolis Like Arafat Rejected the Camp David 2000
Proposal" (video with transcript). MEMRI (Middle East Media Research
Institute). 27 March 2009. "In my family, we are seven siblings.
My six brothers and sisters are in the diaspora." Retrieved
5 August 2017.
^ a b c SFSU Magazine Fall/Winter '03: Saeb Erekat, Forging a Path to
Peace SF State Magazine
^ Encyclopedia of the
Palestinians - Philip Mattar
^ "Top Palestinian peace negotiator
Saeb Erekat suffers heart attack".
The Independent. independent.co.uk. 8 May 2012. Retrieved
5 August 2017.
^ "Palestinian negotiator Erekat undergoes successful lung transplant
surgery"- Jerusalem Post
^ a b 'Profile: Saeb Erakat', BBC News, 4 September 2003.
^ Menachem Klein, The Jerusalem Problem: The Struggle for Permanent
Status, University Press of Florida, 2003 p.98
^ 'Q & A with Saeb Erekat', The Jerusalem Post, 1 February 2005.
Archived 31 October 2006 at the Wayback Machine.
^ Issacharoff, Avi; Ravid, Barak (28 November 2007). "Annapolis joint
statement was completed with just minutes to spare". Haaretz.
^ "Erekat quits over
Palestine Papers – Middle East". Al Jazeera
English. 13 February 2011.
PLO Negotiations Affairs Department, 28 July 2013, Press
Release−Dr. Erekat: “We will continue working for the release of
all our political prisoners.”
^ Bennet, James (17 May 2003). "Top Palestinian Negotiator Offers to
Quit on Eve of Talks". New York Times. Retrieved 29 January
^ Peter Beaumont (19 April 2002). "Army denies frenzy of destruction
in Jenin World news". The Guardian. Retrieved 29 January 2012.
^ "Jeningrad: What the British Media Said". Honest Reporting. 1 May
2002. Archived from the original on 14 November 2010. Retrieved 29
^ CNN Transcripts
And we say the number [massacred] will not be less than 500.
^ CNN Transcript
BLITZER: Mr. Erakat, you probably know that you've come under some
widespread criticism here in the United States for initially charging
that the Israelis were engaged in a massacre in Jenin. Perhaps 500
Palestinians murdered in that massacre, you suggested. But now all of
the evidence suggests that perhaps 53 or 56 Palestinian civilians and
combatants died in that fighting in Jenin.
Wikiquote has quotations related to: Saeb Erekat
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Saeb Erekat.
Saeb Erekat debates Dan Meridor at the International Peace Institute,
June 25, 2010 (video)
San Francisco State University
San Francisco State University magazine interview with Saeb Erekat