On the 29th anniversary of the martyrdom of Comrade Ibrahim al-Rai (Abu al-Muntasser) in the interrogation rooms of the Zionist jails, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine honors his legacy of commitment, struggle and dedication to freedom. After over 10 months of isolation and torture under interrogation, Comrade al-Rai was assassinated by his jailers in the interrogation cells on April 11, 1988. He never gave one word or confession to his jailers; the slogan, “resist, resist like al-Rai under interrogation” recalls his legendary commitment to refuse to break down before the torturers. His life and struggle has inspired all of the fighters that have followed him inside the interrogation cells who refuse to confess, strengthening their steadfastness.
On this anniversary, the PFLP salutes all of the Palestinian prisoners in the jails of the enemy carrying on the struggle of Comrade al-Rai, and urges our Palestinian people and all of the friends of Palestine to express their support for the prisoners’ struggle and daily confrontation with protests, events and actions as we approach Palestinian Prisoners’ Day 2017.
Comrade al-Rai joined the ranks of the PFLP in 1978, having previously been engaged in struggle for two years through spontaneous and local activities for Palestinian liberation. He was arrested in August 1978 and sentenced to five years in prison; he became well-known among his comrades for his spirit of struggle, high level of dedication, commitment, boldness and courage, and his love for his comrades, fellow strugglers and the Palestinian people.
After he spent four years of his sentence, he was released as part of a broad release by the occupation authorities in an attempt to legitimize the so-called “village leagues” or local pseudo-governments in collaboration with the Zionist occupation. At the ceremony of the release of the prisoners, he openly rejected the agreement, saying that the village leagues “represent only themselves; the PLO is the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people.” He was then returned to prison to complete his sentence.
Comrade al-Rai became a co-founder of the Progressive Student Labor Front throughout occupied Palestine. In January 1986, he was arrested again and accused of belonging to the PFLP and for his student activities. He was repeatedly interrogated about being part of a cell that killed Israeli occupation soldiers. He was held in solitary confinement for 9 months and his interrogators were unable to obtain any confession or information from him.
He withstood 58 days in solitary confinement under constant interrogation in the Jenin prison where he was subjected to brutal torture, after which he was sentenced to 7 1/2 years in prison. Despite being sentenced, he was returned to the interrogation cells of the old Nablus prison and then to Moskobiyeh interrogation center, repeatedly transferred from interrogation center to interrogation center. He went on a hunger strike throughout his time in the Moskobiyeh, declaring that his life was in danger.
After a decision of the Zionist Supreme Court, he was transferred to solitary confinement in the Ramle prison where he was again continually interrogated; he was forbidden from changing his clothes, showering or shaving for months in solitary confinement, where he was killed on April 11, 1988 as the Intifada grew outside the prison walls.
The leader and martyr, comrade Ibrahim al-Rai, was dedicated to steadfastness and development even in the darkest and most difficult circumstances. He was willing to give his life for his principles, his life taken by the occupation and its executioners. Throughout his time in prison, he was committed to a principle of confrontation and silence in the face of the interrogators, refusing to betray his party, his comrades and people. Since his martyrdom and the failure of the occupation intelligence services to break his commitment by any means, he has become and remains today a symbol of steadfastness, of revolutionary leadership and true dedication to the liberation of Palestine.