B’nai B’rith International praises members of the European Parliament for condemning the invitation and speech of convicted terrorist Leila Khaled at the august body.
Nearly 60 members of the European Parliament sent a letter, which was initiated by members of the Parliament Anders Vistisen and Bas Belder from the ECR group, to European Parliament President Antonio Tajani in response to the invitation and subsequent speech by Leila Khaled—a known Palestinian terrorist—who spoke at an event titled “The Role of Women in the Palestinian Popular Resistance.” Khaled is a member of the terrorist organization Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) and is known for hijacking planes. Her speech, which we condemned vociferously at the time, was an anti-Israel tirade.
In their letter, the Members of Parliament write: “Ms Leila Khaled is a current member of a EU designated terrorist organisation, the PFLP, and previously responsible for the hijacking of American and Israeli airlines, the spread of incitement and the promotion of hatred and violence. Her current membership of and activities for the PFLP, her provocation to commit a terrorist act by joking about hijacking an airplane – and receiving a standing ovation for that remark during her speech in Parliament – are furthermore clear violations of the Council of Europe Convention on the Prevention of Terrorism.”
(Scroll down to read the full letter from 60 Members of European Parliament)
It is crucial that democratic institutions and officials establish a zero tolerance stance toward terrorists and extremists. The European Parliament should strive to be an example in this regard.
In an op-ed in response to her appearance, B’nai B’rith International CEO Daniel S. Mariaschin wrote “if there was ever a reminder that Europe is losing its way, the appearance this week at the European Parliament by convicted Palestinian terrorist Leila Khaled is surely it.” Click here to read the full op-ed in The Algemeiner.
“Dear Honourable President Tajani,
We would like to bring to your attention “The Role of Women in the Palestinian Popular Struggle” event that was organised by the GUE/NGL Group and Unadikum at the European Parliament in Brussels on 26 September 2017. The event violates Council Common Position of 27 December 2001 on the specific measures to combat terrorism (2001/931/CFSP) and the updated Council Decision (CFSP) 2017/1426) of 4 August 2017 by directly and indirectly giving support to a EU designated terrorist organisation, including the provision of services to a person acting on behalf of the organisation. The Council Decision designates the ‘Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine’ (PFLP), amongst Hamas and Hezbollah’s military wing, as a terror organisation, and thus Parliament shall refrain from inviting representatives of a EU designated terror organisation to the European Parliament.
Ms Leila Khaled is a current member of a EU designated terrorist organisation, the PFLP, and previously responsible for the hijacking of American and Israeli airlines, the spread of incitement and the promotion of hatred and violence. Her current membership of and activities for the PFLP, her provocation to commit a terrorist act by joking about hijacking an airplane – and receiving a standing ovation for that remark during her speech in Parliament – are furthermore clear violations of the Council of Europe Convention on the Prevention of Terrorism. The speeches by the Unadikum representative and Ms Leila Khaled unquestionably amounted to direct and indirect incitement through the use of multiple references of terrorist offences being necessary and justified, the drawing of comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis, the denial of the right of the Jewish people to self-determination and the use of symbols and images associated with classic anti-Semitism to characterise Israel or Israelis. The dissemination of such messages furthermore regrettably violates the definition of Anti-Semitism adopted by Parliament in June 2017. Please note Appendix I, II, III and IV as evidence for the above charges.
We fully recognise the weight that the European Parliament carries in political and public debate and therefore regret the tarnishing of the Parliament’s good name and the message that the event sent to European citizens and Member States. We strongly believe that the Parliament carries a responsibility to all European citizens to take a united stand against terrorism and its incitement, especially at a time when Europe has experienced the agonising truth of terrorist attacks across its continent. We urge that in cases, in which EP regulations and Council Decisions were violated, adequate measures are taken against the persons, political groups and/or entities responsible for the organisation of the event as their actions undermine the united fight against terrorism.
In light of the above, we kindly ask you, under your honourable leadership, to investigate the details surrounding the event and whether the funding for the event on 26 September by the GUENGL Group, notably if EU taxpayers money was used that violated EP regulations and Council Decision (CFSP) 2017/1426). The selling and advertising of merchandise from an outside organisation during the meeting as well as the covering of the EP logo on the podium in the meeting room go against the overall customary EP principles of provisions and rules governing meetings of political groups at the European Parliament. If any irregularities have taken place, we urge for appropriate action to be taken and funds to be returned to the budget of the European Parliament.
We thank you very much for your cooperation and we look forward to your reply,