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Swiss money misused by Palestinian NGO to deny Israel's right to exist at cultural event

Itamar Marcus  |

Once again donor money is misused by Palestinians.

Western donor countries presumably want their money going to Palestinians to promote peace. Palestinian Media Watch has found another example of Western money being misused by a Palestinian NGO to teach children to anticipate a world without Israel.

The Abd Al-Muhaisen Al-Qattan Institution in cooperation with Al-Aqsa University held a cultural event in the Gaza Strip, which was funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation. One of the songs performed at the event taught Palestinian youth that the Israeli cities Safed, Tiberias, Acre, Haifa, Nazareth, and Beit Shean are actually cities of “Palestine”:

Coordinator of the initiative Sa’id Abu Ghazza: “The Life Initiative at [Al-Aqsa] University is one of the events of culture, art, and communal involvement that is being carried out by the Abd Al-Muhaisen Al-Qattan Institution with funding from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC).”

Lyrics: “Oh flying bird, circling around…
by Allah, oh traveling [bird], I burn with envy.
My country Palestine is beautiful.
Turn to Safed, and then to Tiberias,
and send regards to the sea of Acre and Haifa.
Don't forget Nazareth - the Arab fortress,
and tell Beit Shean about its people's return.”

[Official PA TV, Palestine This Morning, Nov. 6, 2021]

Sign behind the singer: “A project of culture, art, and communal involvement by the Abd Al-Muhaisen Al-Qattan Institution, in cooperation with Al-Aqsa University, jointly supported by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation – SDC.”

PMW has documented that the PA uses the song Oh Flying Bird, misrepresenting Israel as “Palestine,” regularly at cultural events. The song, which describes a bird that flies all over “my country Palestine,” delivering greetings to different cities - including Israeli cities - has been broadcast by official PA TV in a dozen different versions since 2011.

The popular Palestinian singer Muhammad Assaf, for example, performed it at the Arab Idol reality contest in 2018: