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Omar Saleh Barghouti-historian, politician and lawyer

Contributed by Reem Barghouty on 11.12.2007:

Omar Saleh Barghouti was born in 1894 in one of the known viallages of the Barghouties known as Deir Ghassaneh.Later he moved to Jerusalem to study at Saint George High School. In 1924 he graduated from the Palestinian Institute for Law in Jerusalem and was appointed in that same Institute to teach Civil Law course. He was also a member of the Institute’s Board of Trustees.In this respect, he became one of the very few notable lawyers at that time.

Omar Saleh Barghouti was very much involved in the national movements against the British colonisation of Palestine and was deported to Acre as he led a group of protestors against the appointment of Herbert Samuel as a British High Commissioner in Palestine.

In 1948 he moved back to Ramallah and was quite incolved in the Jordanian political arena-after the unification of both the east and west banks of the Jordan River-at which time he was appointed as Senator and was later elected as member of Parliament and then he became a minister of education.

Together with all this, Omar Saleh Barghouti has always been fond of reading and writing. He has written a number of books on the History of Palestine,Index of the Laws and bylaws in Palestine,Legislations among the Beduins in Palestine and many other books and articles.A most significant contribution by Omar Saleh Barghouti is his book on the Origins of the Feudal Families and Arab Tribes in Palestine, Jordan and the Golan Heights.

In 1965, Omar Saleh Barghouti passed away and he left a big pile of his “Memoirs”. His grand daughter Rafeef Barghouti took the initiative and the responsibility to complete that unfinished work and produced a book entitled “Al-Marahel”. This book is a historical journey covering the period between the end of the nineteenth century and the last third of the twentieth century including events that took place at the international, regional and local levels. Omar Saleh Barghouty was not only an observor of these events but he was also a participant in many of them especially in terms of those events that shook the Arab Region at that time.

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