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Arafat was offered post of deputy PM by Jordan

September 28, 2007 15:10 IST

Wary of losing grip over his country, Jordan's King Hussein had offered Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat the post of deputy prime minister in his government in 1974, a media report said.

According to newly-released documents, Hussein was afraid of losing control of his country following the capture of the West Bank, home to thousands of Palestinian refugees, in the 1973 Yom Kippur War, The Jerusalem Post quoted a Daily Telegraph report as saying.

In an effort to forestall such a rift, the King offered to make Arafat his deputy prime minister, a proposal which was evidently not accepted, the report said.

The former Palestinian leader aimed to create an independent Palestinian state and strongly advocated the "Right of Return" for the refugees in Jordan, it said.

Hussein later ceded the West Bank in 1988, a step meant to ensure that any Palestinian state would be set-up on land occupied by Israel and not by Jordan.