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Digital Archive International History Declassified

August 10, 1970

HUNGARIAN FOREIGN MINISTRY MEMORANDUM ON THE PALESTINE LIBERATION MOVEMENT IN 1970 (EXCERPTS)

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    This memorandum briefly describes the growing Palestinian Movement in Israel and recommends that the Hungarian Solidarity Committee establish ties with the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), while not endorsing any radical acts of terrorism.
    "Hungarian Foreign Ministry memorandum on the Palestine Liberation Movement in 1970 (excerpts)," August 10, 1970, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, MOL Küm, XIX-J-1-j, Palesztina Tük 1971. 72.d. 001302/8. Translated by Sabine Topolansky. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/122520
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The strengthening of the Palestine Movement is closely related to Israel’s politics, which is based on acquiring territory, racial differentiation and persecuting the Arabs.  The process in which Israel became the main area of oppressing liberation movements, progressive systems and advancing imperialist ambitions is also connected to the Palestine Liberation Movement. The Movement’s main objectives are the following: fighting for autonomy for the Palestinian Arab people and the foundation of an independent state where Palestinian Arabs and Jews may live together with equal rights, hence the fighting for the destruction of Israel that was founded on the basis of race and religion.

[…]

The Palestine Movement is invariably still extremely fragmented and despite the efforts for a centralized leadership lead by organizations and partisan groups there is still an estimate of 100 movements.

[…]

During the past 20 years of the liberation of the Palestinian people the movement went through great developments. In the beginning, it meant the issue of refugees that the UN and the Security Council tried to tackle. The SC resolutions declared that those seeking to go home should be granted the possibility to return to their homelands and granting compensation by Israel for those who did not wish to return. The implementations of these resolutions were rejected by Israel.

[…]

The upsurge and strengthening of the Palestine Movement as well as appearing as a political and military actor introduced a new and difficult situation for the majority of the Arab countries, especially for Jordan and Lebanon. The influence of the Arab governments weakened towards the movement. Ten organizations that were included in the PLO, FATAH and the Central Committee together with the partisan groups are becoming more and more independent. They achieved authority in the Arab world thus most Arab governments are clearly inclined to support the Palestine Movement both financially and morally (part of the Arab countries founded their own Palestinian movements in hope of control – Syria founded the SAIKA and Iraq founded the Arab Liberation Front).

The PLO and the FATAH is more and more recognized internationally. One proof of this is their participation at the consultations of the non-aligned countries and first and foremost their successful ambition to seek contact with the socialist countries. This spring the delegation of the PLO lead by Yasser Arafat visited the Soviet Union, China and the Democratic Republic of Vietnam. The delegation of the PLO was welcomed by the Solidarity Committee while in China and in the DRV the delegations of the PLO and the FATAH were received on a governmental level.

The socialist countries – with the exception of China – dealt carefully with the Palestine Movement however they are granting moral support in some cases even financial support for their cause.

Through the Hungarian Solidarity Committee our nation also met different Palestinian organizations. Until now the injured were seen to and skilled workers were offered training. Only the PLO was granted financial support. This year, for the first time, the scholars of the PLO were seen. Considering our future relations we recommend to consider the following points:

1, The Palestine Liberation Movement – along with all its current contradictions – is a manifestation of the anti-imperialist fight for the independence of the Palestinian people, the struggle for autonomy, recovering national rights and the getting back territories taken by Israel.

The movement’s most powerful element is the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) which is the closest to the politics, strategy and tactics of the EAK that plays the vital role in tackling the Middle-East crisis. Because of this, we should focus on our relations towards the PLO. Besides, we are in close relations with the ANSAR (Partisan Forces) that is a communist Palestine Liberation movement.

2, Considering the affiliations and advancements(in case it is required) in our relations, political and financial possibilities the partner of PLO should be the Hungarian Solidarity Committee and as for ANSAR, MSZMP should be responsible. For this, government bodies and social organizations should offer their help.

3, We should continue to distance ourselves from certain radical terrorist attacks committed by Palestinian groups, from declarations of propaganda concerning the ultimate destruction of Israel and the anti-communist statements.

4, Our press and informative bodies should stand up more bravely and determinedly for the just cause of the Palestinian people, furthermore they should also shed some light on and explain the nature and challenges of the Palestinian movement and they should highlight the positive developments within the movement.