Supporters of Hamas at a Palestinian university in Jerusalem staged a paramilitary show of force on the school’s campus Sunday, four months after a similar rally organized by terror group Islamic Jihad led to academic sanctions against the school.
The Islamic Bloc of Al-Quds University, a student group associated with the Hamas terror group, paraded on campus with masked faces, carrying green banners and cardboard replicas of missiles launched by Islamist terrorists from Gaza into Israel, Tom Gross, an independent journalist and commentator, wrote on his website Tuesday.
The rally, which took place outside the Humanities Faculty in the university’s Abu Dis campus, was titled “Alerting the loyal – on the path of the great leaders,” according to the group’s Facebook page. The event was meant to commemorate Hamas leaders Ahmed Yassin, Abdul Aziz Rantisi and Ibrahim Maqadmeh, all killed by Israel.
On November 5, supporters of Palestinian group Islamic Jihad had marched in black military gear with fake automatic weapons, waving flags and offering Nazi-style salutes. Banners with images of Palestinian suicide bombers decorated the campus’s main square.
Brandeis University suspended its partnership with Al-Quds later in November after its president, Sari Nusseibeh, issued a statement claiming that “Jewish extremists” were using the demonstration to “capitalize on events in ways that misrepresent the university as promoting inhumane, anti-Semitic, fascist, and Nazi ideologies.”
“Without these ideologies,” he said “there would not have been the massacre of the Jewish people in Europe; without the massacre, there would not have been the enduring Palestinian catastrophe.”
Brandeis dubbed Nusseibeh’s comments “inflammatory.”
Nusseibeh told the Times of Israel in a written reply last November that upon hearing of the Islamic Jihad rally he had immediately condemned such rallies as “unacceptable” and set up an investigation into the event.
In January, Brandeis student newspaper The Justice reported that the university was holding talks with Al-Quds to re-establish the partnership.
Some Al-Quds students told Gross this week that they were “sick and tired of university authorities allowing terrorist groups to hold military parades around campus.”
According to Hamas’s Al-Aqsa TV channel, the rally in Jerusalem drew hundreds of students who watched a play about “the dangers facing the Al-Aqsa mosque.” The event was attended by the speaker of the Palestinian Legislative Council for Hamas, Aziz Dweik, and by Hamas official Sheikh Hassan Yousef.
JTA and Times of Israel staff contributed to this story.