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Presidential Standard (Palestine)

Last modified: 2023-11-04 by ian macdonald
Keywords: palestine | president | triangle: hoist (red) | swords: 2 (crossed) | swords: 2 (golden) | wreath (golden) | eagle of saladin |
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[Presidential Standard (Palestine)] 1:2 image by Eugene Ipavec and M. Schmöger, 24 June 2007

See also:


A desk flag version of the Chairman's Standard could be seen in a photograph [similar to this one in Der Spiegel] published in Yediot Akhronot newspaper of June 8th of a meeting between Chairman Arafat (his official title is Chairman of the Palestinian National Authority, not president) and the German foreign minister.
Anonymous, 11 Jun 2001

The word ra'is, which is Mahmoud Abbas's title in Arabic, is correctly translated as either president or chairman. A "ra'is al-jumhuriya" is a president of the republic, while a "ra'is majlis al-wuzara" is a president of the council of ministers, or prime minister.
Joseph McMillan, 16 Aug 2005

His official title is "Chairman of the Palestinian National Authority." Nevertheless. he is refereed to by the Palestinians as "Ra'is" which is literally means "head" and is short for "Ra'is al'Dewila" or "Head of the State," and is usually used in reference to Arab leaders who are not royalty.
Dov Gutterman, 25 Apr 2005

BBC World television channel showed yesterday Javier Solana, the European Union foreign affairs representative, meeting Yasser Arafat. They were seating at a table which displayed three desktop flags:

  • the European Union one;
  • the Palestinian flag with a "short" red triangle approximately as long as 1/4th the flag's length; and
  • a Palestinian flag with a "long" red triangle approximately as long as half the flag's length and some kind of golden emblem centered on the fly (i.e. on the fly half of the flag).
The emblem was mostly golden (it might bear the Palestinian arms on the middle, so that the central escutcheon in the Arab colours would scarcely be visible) and almost certainly had some kind of laurel or olive wreath around it. The whole thing was not circular, rather an upright oval, and exceeded the width of the white stripe, so that it ran on top of both the black and green stripes (about a third of the height of each). The flag had a golden fringe, I seem to recall that neither the European Union nor the Palestinian (national) flags had one.
I found strange the simultaneous and official display of two versions of the Palestinian flag – one with a quarter-length triangle, the other with a half-length one – suggesting that the first one is correct on the plain flag while the latter is used on other (which?) flags. We used to show a half-length-triangle flag on FOTW because it was identified as correct by the PASSIA or Palestinian Academic Society for the Study of International Affairs.
Santiago Dotor, 26 Jul 2001

German weekly magazine Der Spiegel, no. 24/2001, 11th June 2001, showed a photograph of a small Palestinian presidential flag. As we do not yet have an image of this flag I tried a first, very crude reconstruction.
M. Schmöger, 18 Aug 2001

During president Arafat's talk on TV on 16 December 2001, I noticed that his personal flag had slightly changed, with respect to what I reported in 1999: on top of the swords there is now a golden Saladin eagle. Also the flag is now golden fringed [possibly only on indoor versions] and the lower band was dark green.
Armand Noel du Payrat, 18 Dec 2001

It's interesting that it would seem that the police, chairman and state flags are basicaly the same with only the symbol moved around the field to differientiate them.
Marc Pasquin, 15 Nov 2004

Former Presidential Flag (?)

[Former Presidential Standard (?) (Palestine)] 1:2 image by Eugene Ipavec, 24 Nov 2007

On a colour photo I saw of president Arafat's bureau, there was a triband black over white over light blue (instead of green), with 2 crossed golden swords surrounded by palms in the white band: is that the official flag or a different one?
Armand Noel du Payrat, 15 Feb 1999

The Presidential Flag is flown only at the Presidential office and higher government officials (ministers, etc.). It is an exact replica of the common flag, the only difference being the golden swords and the palm trees placed in the corner [sic – centre?] of the white strip.
Al Bitar (Palestinian Embassy at Bucharest), 15 Feb 1999

Presidential Security, Force 17

[Presidential Security] image located by William Garrison, 18 October 2023

The flag of the "Force 17" or the "Presidential Security" unit that protected Palestine Pres. Yasser Arafat; c. 2003. Per Wikipedia: "Force 17" originated in the early 1970s and was housed in Building 17 of Al-Fakhani St. in Beirut, Lebanon. It was a commando unit of Yasser Arafat's PLO (Palestinian Liberation Organization) as well as his personal security detail while he was in exile in Beirut. Following the peace-seeking 1993 "Oslo Accords", in 1994 the unit was largely absorbed into Yasser Arafat's personal security force in the "Palestinian Authority" areas in the "West Bank" that became "Palestine". This "Presidential Security" unit was headquartered in the PA government compound in Ramallah, Palestine (West Bank). Following Arafat's death in Nov. 2004, the unit was separated in late 2006 to become the "Presidential Guard" as part of the "Palestinian Security Services." The Arabic slogan below the top red flame reads: "al-Quat" or "Force 17". There is a thin/narrow flag-pole sleeve on the left side (hoist).
William Garrison, 18 October 2023

It is interesting to see that the number "1" is actually the silhouette of the whole Sinai Peninsula, thus, claiming to be operative in the whole territory outlined.
Esteban Rivera, 18 October 2023

I suggest that the "1" represents only "Greater Palestine" to include Israel and the West Bank (not the Sinai.)

If one takes a moment to look at maps of both the Sinai and Israel/Palestine, I think one can quickly visualize the correct answer. The currently displayed "1" has a little dark mark/tick pointing to the left near the middle right -- that area I believe is the eastern "Dead Sea" of Israel/Palestine, not the eastern "Red Sea" of Sinai. The "1" is very sharp-pointed at the bottom like southern Israel, whereas the Sinai's southern bottom is more rounded.

Furthermore, I do not recall reading of any claim by the Palestinians to the Sinai (which Egypt governs), but they do advocate that the 1948-war refugees have the "Right of Return" to all of Israel.

Of course, the "1" represents half of the number "17" shown in the "Force 17" logo.

William Garrison, 18 October 2023

President's Private Guard

[President's Private Guard] image located by William Garrison, 18 October 2023


[President's Private Guard] image located by William Garrison, 18 October 2023

The white-field flag containing the Arabic slogan of "rayiys al-haras al-khasi" or "President's Private Guard" of the Palestinian Authority (PA); c. 2006. It is also known with the less tongue-twisting name of "Presidential Guard". It operates outside of the PA's "National Security Forces" and reports directly to the Palestinian president. It is an elite force, comprised of around 2300 personnel, with a mandate that includes personal protection to the president, counter-insurgency, and rapid intervention tasks. There is a flag-pole sleeve on the left side (hoist). The design of the "shield" on this flag resembles the shield seen on the PA Presidential Standard/flag.

Between 1994-2005 the president's security agency was known as the "Presidential Security" unit to protect "Fatah Party" Pres. Yasser Arafat and was comprised of his "Force 17" commandos, until his death in Nov. 2004. Shortly thereafter, in 2006, it was renamed as the "Presidential Guard" and staffed with "Fatah Party" loyalists of Pres. M. Abbas. See also: Presidential Security, Force 17.

William Garrison, 18 October 2023

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