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Students use PMW material to protest planned speech by Abbas' advisor at Israeli university

Avraham Shapira  |
Students use PMW material to protest planned speech by Abbas' advisor at Israeli university

Click here to view PMW's report documenting Al-Habbash's history of hate speech, published the day before his visit to the university

: “Mahmoud Abbas’ Aide to Speak at University – Students: University Decision ‘Absurd and Outrageous Beyond Comprehension.’”

By Avraham Shapira, Dec. 02, 2014

“Students at [Israel’s] Ben Gurion University were astounded to discover that Dr. Mahmoud Al-Habbash [the PA’s Supreme Shari’ah Judge and Mahmoud Abbas’ Advisor on Religious and Islamic Affairs] had given a lecture yesterday at the institution where they are studying. Al-Habbash is Mahmoud Abbas’ aide, and according to the students, incites regularly against Jews.

The students, who received preliminary knowledge [of Al-Habbash’s visit], held a protest, and the chairman of the ‘Students for Israel’ association wrote a strongly worded letter to University President Rivka Karmi, copies of which were sent to the minister of education, the mayor of Beer Sheva, and the chairman of the Council for Higher Education.

Yesterday afternoon, Al-Habbash gave a speech entitled ‘Religious Aspects of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict and the Need for Interreligious Tolerance.’ In the letter sent by the student association, Eliyahu Nissim, chairman of ‘Students for Israel,’ attacked Al-Habbash for his incessant incitement against Jews, and the University for inviting him. ‘Will you invite a murderer to speak about violence next? Why do you invite a terrorist who preaches and incites to terrorism in the name of Islam, to speak about “interreligious tolerance?”’ [Nissim] went on: ‘We call on you, as a movement of students from all the institutions of higher education in Israel, with a clear demand: Cancel the event. There is no reason the University should legitimize incitement to violence and terrorism under the guise of an academic lecture. This is absurd and outrageous beyond comprehension.’

The students went on to quote statements by Al-Habbash, courtesy of Palestinian Media Watch
. ‘Whoever wants Jihad, the direction of Jihad is clear. Jerusalem is the direction, Jerusalem is the address,’ Al-Habbash [was quoted as saying]. In another article, Al-Habbash expressed support for the Arab perpetrators of the recent terror attacks in Jerusalem. ‘We are behind them; the leadership is with them. The President [Mahmoud Abbas] commemorated them a few days ago, blessing them, expressing solidarity with them, and demanding that they carry out even more Ribat (religious conflict/war over land claimed to be Islamic). We are with them in their every movement, operation and action, and we welcome their actions at the blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque,’ Al-Habbash said.

As stated previously, the University decided to proceed with the event as planned, and Al-Habbash spoke at the University.”
[, Translated from Hebrew by PMW]