Jailed Palestinian leader asks millions to protest

By the Associated Press | July 20, 2011 | 8:00 AM EDT

RAMALLAH, West Bank (AP) — A prominent jailed Palestinian leader is asking millions to take to the streets in September in a bid for Palestinian statehood.

Marwan Barghouti said widespread protests in Palestinian areas and abroad will strengthen support for statehood. Palestinian officials are seeking U.N. recognition in September.

He called for the protests in a letter published Wednesday in Palestinian newspapers.

Barghouti, who's 51, is widely admired among Palestinians for leading an armed Palestinian uprising against Israel in the early years of the last decade.

He is serving five life sentences in Israel for his role in the conflict.