UN chief pulls support for Palestinian women’s center named after terrorist
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'The glorification of terrorism, or the perpetrators of heinous terrorist acts, is unacceptable under any circumstances'

UN chief pulls support for Palestinian women’s center named after terrorist

Secretary-General Guterres says agency no longer affiliated with West Bank facility over its 'glorification of terrorism'

Palestinians inaugurate a square to commemorate Dalal Mughrabi, a Palestinian terrorist who killed dozens of Israeli civilians in a 1978 bus hijacking in Israel, seen in portrait, in the West Bank city of Ramallah, on  March 13, 2011. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed)
Palestinians inaugurate a square to commemorate Dalal Mughrabi, a Palestinian terrorist who killed dozens of Israeli civilians in a 1978 bus hijacking in Israel, seen in portrait, in the West Bank city of Ramallah, on March 13, 2011. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed)

The United Nations on Sunday said that it had withdrawn support for a Palestinian women’s center named for a notorious terrorist, saying the move was “offensive” and glorified terrorism.

“The United Nations disassociated itself from the Center once it learned the offensive name chosen for it and will take measures to ensure that such incidents do not take place in the future,” said a statement from Stéphane Dujarric, spokesman for Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

The center was named after Dalal Mughrabi, who took part in the 1978 Coastal Road Massacre. Mughrabi and several other Fatah terrorists landed on a beach near Tel Aviv, hijacked a bus on Israel’s Coastal Road and killed 38 civilians, 13 of them children, and wounded over 70.

“The glorification of terrorism, or the perpetrators of heinous terrorist acts, is unacceptable under any circumstances,” the UN statement said. “The UN has repeatedly called for an end to incitement to violence and hatred as they present one of the obstacles to peace.”

Palestinians hold posters showing Dalal Mughrabi, a Palestinian terrorist involved in the 1978 Coastal Road Massacre in which 38 Israelis were killed, in the West Bank city of Ramallah, on July 16, 2008. (Issam Rimawi/Flash90)
Palestinians hold posters showing Dalal Mughrabi, a Palestinian terrorist involved in the 1978 Coastal Road Massacre in which 38 Israelis were killed, in the West Bank city of Ramallah, on July 16, 2008. (Issam Rimawi/Flash90)

“The United Nations support to this community ended last year and it has asked for the logo of UN Women to be removed immediately. Furthermore, the inauguration of the Center took place after the UN’s association with it,” the statement said.

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in Cairo on February 15, 2017. (AFP/Khaled Desouki)
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in Cairo on February 15, 2017. (AFP/Khaled Desouki)

The UN move came two days after Norway’s foreign minister condemned the PA for naming the center after Mughrabi, demanding the country’s name be removed from the building and that the funds Norway donated for its construction be returned.

“The glorification of terrorist attacks is completely unacceptable, and I deplore this decision in the strongest possible terms. Norway will not allow itself to be associated with institutions that take the names of terrorists in this way. We will not accept the use of Norwegian aid funding for such purposes,” Borge Brende said in a statement on Friday.

Norway’s rebuke of the PA came after the Norwegian branch of the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem brought the matter to the country’s attention last week, the organization said in a statement, while thanking Brende for his “swift and clear” response.

Former Israel Police commissioner Assaf Hefetz stands inside the remains of a bus from a 1978 terror attack known as the Coastal Road Massacre, in a museum in Holon, on May 2, 2013. (Yaakov Naumi/Flash90)
Former Israel Police commissioner Assaf Hefetz stands inside the remains of a bus from a 1978 terror attack known as the Coastal Road Massacre, in a museum in Holon, on May 2, 2013. (Yaakov Naumi/Flash90)

Palestinian Media Watch, which first brought attention to the naming of the women’s center, recently quoted a local village leader saying that “the center will focus especially on the history of the struggle of Martyr Dalal Mughrabi and on presenting it to the youth groups, and…constitutes the beginning of the launch of enrichment activities regarding the history of the Palestinian struggle.”

In addition to the women’s center in Burqa, the PA has named a number of events and facilities in honor of Mughrabi and the other terrorists who died during the massacre in a firefight with Israeli security forces, with the ruling Fatah party repeatedly hailing them as “martyrs.”

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