Skip to main content

Could Marwan Barghouti lead post-war Palestinian government?

Marwan Barghouti is currently in prison for his role directing attacks against Israelis during the second intifada, but he's also the most popular Palestinian leader by a long shot, fueling news that he could be part of a future prisoner exchange.
Men walk past a section of Israel's separation barrier painted with a portrait of Palestinian Marwan Barghouti, held in an Israel jail, on November 6, 2023 in Bethlehem in the occupied West Bank.

Palestinian leaders in Ramallah appear to be in a panic as news circulates of a potential prisoner exchange that could include the release of popular Fatah leader Marwan Barghouti, who has spent more than 20 years in an Israeli prison.

Many Palestinians believe that Barghouti would be able to rebuild the Palestine Liberation Organization after almost two decades of stagnation under octogenarian Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and facilitate a reconciliation government, a message that resonates with young Palestinians.  

Who is Barghouti? 

Born in Ramallah in 1959, Barghouti is the founder of the Fatah Tanzim, an armed offshoot of Fatah that has a strong presence in the West Bank, which is overwhelmingly loyal to him.

Access the Middle East news and analysis you can trust

Join our community of Middle East readers to experience all of Al-Monitor, including 24/7 news, analyses, memos, reports and newsletters.


Only $100 per year.