UK Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn sat on a panel at a 2012 conference in Doha with several Palestinian terrorists sentenced for murder, according to a Sunday report, the latest in a series of exposés showing the embattled British politician alongside Palestinian terror groups.
At the conference, Corbyn shared the platform with then Hamas head Khaled Mashaal, who is on the UK sanctions list, the Daily Telegraph reported Sunday.
Another terrorist at the event was the former leader of Hamas’s military wing, Husam Badran.
As head of the armed wing, Badram oversaw a number of bombings by the terror group during the Second Intifada, including the 2001 bombings of Sbarro Pizza in Jerusalem which killed 15 people, and the Dolphinariam Discotheque in Tel Aviv, which killed 21.
Another participant was Abdul Aziz Umar, who received seven life sentences for his involvement in the 2003 bombing of Jerusalem’s Cafe Hillel, in which seven people were killed.
Badran and Umar were freed from Israeli jails in 2011, less than a year before the conference, as part of the prisoner exchange for the return of captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.
Corbyn himself wrote afterwards in the Morning Star newspaper that the panel contained speakers who had been freed, “in return for the Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.”
He said that, “their contribution was fascinating and electrifying,” the Telegraph reported.
In video of the 2012 event, Badran says, “The nakba [the Palestinian term for the “catastrophe” of the community’s displacement during the 1948 Israel-Arab war] which made us refugees took place via force, and the return will be only viable through military and armed resistance and nothing else,” according to a Telegraph translation.
The Labour leader has in the past been criticized for calling terror groups Hamas and Hezbollah “friends” when inviting members for a parliamentary meeting in 2009. He later downplayed the comment and said he regretted using the term.
A spokesperson for Corbyn told the Telegraph that the Labour leader supports Palestinians in his quest for peace in the region.
“Jeremy has a long and principled record of solidarity with the Palestinian people and engaging with actors in the conflict to support peace and justice in the Middle East. That is the right thing to do,” he said.
Delighted that Sheikh Raed Salah was won his appeal against the Home Secretary on all counts. His voice of the Palestinians must be heard.
— Jeremy Corbyn (@jeremycorbyn) April 8, 2012
During the conference, Corbyn also offered his support for Sheikh Raed Salah, the leader of the hard-line Islamist Northern Branch of the Islamic Movement in Israel, who at the time was facing deportation from the UK for hate speech.
The latest revelation came three days after The Times of London published a picture of Corbyn standing next to Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine chief Maher al-Taher, at a commemoration ceremony for the Black September terrorists who took part in the 1972 massacre of 11 Israelis at the Munich Olympics.
Corbyn’s participation in the October 2014 event, in which he was photographed laying a wreath near the terrorists’ grave, had already caused an uproar, provoking fierce reactions from British Jews and Israeli politicians alike.
Jeremy Corbyn shared a platform with a senior official from a terrorist group that murdered a British rabbi in a Synagogue attack a month later https://t.co/utXuAZh160
— The Times of London (@thetimes) August 16, 2018
Corbyn has attempted to downplay his involvement in the wreath-laying ceremony, telling Sky News that “I was present when [the wreath] was laid. I don’t think I was actually involved in it.”
He has also gone on the offensive against critics, issuing a scathing critique of Israel after being publicly reprimanded by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu earlier this week.
Corbyn said Netanyahu’s “claims about my actions and words are false” and that “what deserves unequivocal condemnation is the killing of over 160 Palestinian protesters in Gaza by Israeli forces since March, including dozens of children.”
These revelations follow intense scrutiny of Corbyn’s past and present statements about Israel and anti-Semitism, and his alleged failure to curb resurgent anti-Semitism within his party.
Last month, Labour pointedly decided not to adopt parts of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s working definition of anti-Semitism that related to Israel.
Jim Sheridan, a former MP and Corbyn ally, was suspended from Labour over the weekend after writing a Facebook post accusing Jews of plotting against Corbyn.
Sheridan wrote that he had lost “respect and empathy” for Britain’s Jews over their opposition to Corbyn. He lamented what the Jewish community “and their Blairite plotters are doing to my party and the long suffering people of Britain who need a radical Labour government.”
Footage from 2015 that resurfaced recently showed Corbyn endorsing the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel as “part and parcel of a legal process that has to be adopted.”
Corbyn had maintained that he opposes a blanket boycott of Israel, supporting instead only boycotting produce from Israeli settlements.
“Jeremy is not in favor of a comprehensive or blanket boycott,” a spokesperson for Corbyn told The Guardian in December. “He doesn’t support BDS. He does support targeted action aimed at illegal settlements and occupied territories.”
In the footage filmed in Belfast, he is asked: “Can the panel give hope to the people of Palestine by supporting the movement for Boycott Divestment and Sanctions against Israel?”
He replies: “I think the boycott campaign, divestment campaign, is part and parcel of a legal process that has to be adopted.” He later adds: “I believe that sanctions against Israel, because of its breach of the trade agreement, are the appropriate way of promoting [the] peace process.”
The footage was published in 2015 by Sinn Féin, the extremist nationalist Northern Irish political party that hosted Corbyn in Belfast.
JTA contributed to this report.