RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Renowned Palestinian poet Ahmad Dahbour died on Saturday in the central occupied West Bank city of Ramallah at the age of 71, after long struggle against kidney failure.
Secretary General of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Saeb Erekat and Palestinian Authority spokesperson Yousif al-Mahmoud both released eulogy statements for Dahbour, and sent condolences to his family and to all Palestinian people for their loss.
"Arab culture has lost one of its main pillars with the departure Ahmad Dahbour, a poet and a freedom fighter," al-Mahmoud said.
Dahbour was born in Haifa in 1946, in present-day northern Israel. After the establishment of the Israeli state in 1948, known to Palestinians as the Nakba (“catastrophe” in Arabic) that left some 750,000 Palestinians as refugees abroad, his family moved to Lebanon, and then to Homs refugee camp in Syria where Dabhour grew up.
Though Dahbour did not receive a basic education, he was an avid reader and cultivated a talent for poetry.
He continued to live in exile until he relocated to Ramallah in 1996. During his return, which came 48 years after the Nakba, he also visited his hometown of Haifa on April 21, his birthday, according to an interview with Wafa News agency.
He published a number of poetry collections during his life, most published in Beirut, and his poetry was used in nationalist songs by many groups.