Palestinian Islamic Jihad Announces New Secretary General

Ziyad Rashid al-Nakhalah (Abu Tareq) will replace Ramadan Abdallah Shalah, who is reportedly ill and can no longer fill the position

Palestinian Islamic Jihad Announces New Secretary General

al-Istaqlal, September 28, 2018

On September 28, 2018, PIJ spokesman Da'ud Shehab held a press conference in the "return camp" in the eastern part of Gaza City, where he announced the election of Ziyad Rashid al-Nakhalah (Abu Tareq) to the position of PIJ secretary general, according to a publication by the Meir Amit Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center. Al-Nakhalah will replace Ramadan Abdallah Shalah, who is ill and can no longer fill the position.

Also announced were the names of nine members of the organization's political bureau, among them Dr. Muhammad al-Hindi, Dr. Anwar Abu Taha and Khaled al-Batash. Shehab stressed that others had been elected from "other jihad arenas, such as the West Bank, the 1948 territory and the jails," and that their names had not been revealed for security reasons.

Ziyad al-Nakhalah, who today lives in Lebanon, was born in the Gaza Strip in 1953 and grew up in Khan Yunis. He is married and has six children (two sons and four daughters). In 1971 he was detained by Israel for the first time and sentenced to life imprisonment. After 14 years he was released in the "Jibril deal." After his release, he was elected to the PIJ's first Shura Council, and Fathi Shqaqi, who was the PIJ's secretary general, delegated him to establish a military wing.

He was detained again in 1988 for his part in igniting the first intifada and was expelled to south Lebanon, where he advanced through the ranks of the organization. In addition to this military-terrorist activities, he was appointed PIJ representative in Lebanon. After al-Shqaqi was killed in 1995, the Shura Council elected al-Nakhalah as deputy secretary general, and he was a member of the limited military leadership headed by Ramadan Shalah (al-Istaqlal, September 28, 2018).

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