As one of Israel's founding generation, Avnery was able to gain the ear of prime ministers, even while he spent decades editing an anti-establishment magazine that was a thorn in their side.
He came to wider attention in 1982 as the first Israeli to meet Yasser Arafat, head of the Palestine Liberation Organisation. At the time, Arafat and the PLO were reviled in Israel and much of the west as terrorists.
Famously, Avnery smuggled himself past the Israeli army's siege lines around Beirut to reach Arafat. The pair were reported to have maintained close ties until the Palestinian leader's much speculated upon death in 2004.
Avnery founded Israel's only significant – if small – peace movement, Gush Shalom, in 1993.