Addel Aziz ar-Rantisi

Abdel Aziz al-Rantisi ( 23 of October of 1947 – 17 of April of 2004 ) was the cofounder, along with Sheik Ahmed Yassin , the organization Islamist Palestinian Hamas . A doctor and father of six children, he was killed by the Israeli army in a missile attack in which his escorts also died, while dozens of civilians were injured.

He was the political leader and spokesman for Hamas in the Gaza Strip following the death of Ahmed Yasin, the organization’s spiritual leader, in March 2004. 1 Like most Hamas members, Rantisi opposed any submission to Israel and Called for the liberation of all Palestine through jihad against the Jewish state. In addition, Rantisi was one of the Hamas leaders most committed to denying the Holocaust , asserting that it never happened in the manner described by Western historians, and that the Zionists for a time supported and financed Nazi activities . 2

He was considered a terrorist by the United States , the European Union and Israel for advocating suicide bombings by civilians. According to the Chicago Tribune , he went on to state “We will kill Jews everywhere. There will be no security for any Jew, whether he has come from the United States, Russia or anywhere.” 3


Rantisi was born in Yubna , near Jaffa , but in 1948 – when he was one year old – his family relocated to the Jan Yunis refugee camp in the Gaza Strip . He studied pediatrics and genetics in Egypt for nine years, being the best of his kind, and then a medical doctor , although he never practiced his profession. During his stay in Egypt he became a convinced member of the Muslim Brotherhood , an organization from which Hamas was born. In 1976 he returned to Gaza to teach parasitology and genetics at the Islamic University. 4

In 1987 , four residents of the Yabaliya refugee camp in Gaza were killed in a road accident. 5 Ar-Rantisi claimed to have met Sheikh Ahmad Yasin , as well as ‘Abdel Fattah Dujan, Muhammad Shama’, Dr Ibrahim al-Yazur, Isa an-Nayyar and Salah Shahada, and issued instructions for people to leave The mosques chanting Allahu ábar (“God is great”). This would be the beginning of the first intifada , according to Rantisi, under whose leadership that year was integrated what would be called Hamas. The PLO , rival group, was added later and a unique dome was created.

In December 1992 , he was expelled to the south of Lebanon , as part of the expulsion of 416 Hamas agents and Palestinian Islamic Jihad , and rose as general spokesman for the expelled. Upon his return in 1993 , he was arrested and then released. He was detained several times and for a longer time by the Palestinian Authority for criticizing the PA and Yasser Arafat , being the last occasion in mid- 1999 . When Rantisi returned to his public position as Yasin’s “right arm”, he remained as one of the main opponents of all ceasefire and stop terrorist attacks against Israel. During talks between the Hamas leadership both in Gaza and abroad and in constant contact with the PA on the terrorist activity, Rantisi, along with Ibrahim Macadma , controlled the tone of the Hamas leadership .

Following the triumphant return of Sheikh Yasin to the Gaza Strip in October 1997 , he worked closely with the old sheikh to restore hierarchical command and reinforce uniformity of cadres within a reorganized Hamas. After the elimination of Saláh Shahada and Ibrahim Macadma, it became the political head and also acclaimed spiritual leader of Hamás, maintaining like main spokesman of the organization. In these multiple roles, Rantisi directed, ordered and determined policies, including terrorist activities, according to interrogations of Hamas agents. His public statements served as instructions for terrorists to carry out attacks.

In moments of tension, when diplomacy touched its limits, ar-Rantisi never ceased to be a critical voice. He took the opportunity of a meeting between US Congressman Christopher H. Smith and the then Prime Minister of Israel, Binyamin Netanyahu , the 28 of January of 1998 , to announce through Reuters that “there is only one alternative to the Palestinians, Is to return to the uprising and the armed struggle against Israeli occupation. ” Despupes hours Israeli withdrawal from Bethlehem , the 19 of August of 2002 , Rantissi was quoted as saying, according to the Manchester Guardian , that rifles Hamas “will continue targeted against the Zionist enemy.”

Key Dates

  • The 6 as June as 2003 . Ar-Rantisi broke negotiations with Mahmoud Abbas , prime minister of the Palestinian Authority, who had called for an end to armed resistance against the Israeli occupation.
  • The October to June of 2003 ar-Rantisi survived the attack of a helicopter attack Israeli against a vehicle traveling; Suffered only minor injuries. His son, however, was seriously injured and his bodyguard died.
  • The 26 of January of 2004 , Rantissi offered “a truce of 10 years in exchange for the [Israeli] withdrawal and the creation of a state.” It was rumored earlier that there had been talks within Hamas to proceed like this, but this time, ar-Rantisi announced that “the movement has made a decision about it.”
  • The 23 of March of 2004 , Rantissi was named leader of Hamas in the Gaza Strip, after the assassination of Yassin by Israeli forces.
  • He was killed on 17 of April of 2004 by shooting missiles, made by members of the Israeli forces from a helicopter.


  1. Back to top↑ Israeli missile attack kills new Hamas chief
  2. Back to top↑ «» . Accessed June 18, 2007 .
  3. Back to top↑ «» . Archived from the original on November 18, 2015 . Accessed June 18, 2007 .
  4. Back to top↑ BBC NEWS | Middle East | Profile: Hamas leader Rantissi
  5. Back to top↑ Dr Abdel Aziz Rantisi – Obituaries, News –