After hearing that two known members of a Palestinian terrorist organization and supporters of the boycott and sanctions movement against Israel spoke at the European Parliament, Israeli Minister of Strategic Affairs Gilad Erdan wrote to the Parliament’s president to urge him to condemn the terrorists’ invite and ensure it never happens again. “Such unfortunate occurrences must not be allowed to repeat themselves,” wrote Erdan in his letter, which was published on Monday by Israel. “The European Parliament must never be a platform for terrorists.”
In a letter dated July 18, Erdan informed Parliament President David Sassoli that Khaled Barakat and Mohammed Khatib—who had recently spoken in a public event at the European Parliament at the invitation of Spanish Member of European Parliament Manu Pineda—were in fact known members of the “Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine” (PFLP), an EU-designated terror group.
Erdan said indications are that Pineda not only knew of the two speakers’ ties to terrorism, but also “in the past has expressed his support for EU-designated terrorist organizations such as the PFLP.” The Israeli official said, “This must raise questions about the appropriateness” of Pineda’s roles in certain European committees, including the Committee on Foreign Affairs.
Saying he was “utterly dismayed” to learn of the terrorist speaking event, Erdan told Sassoli that Barakat had also been “instrumental” in getting foreign funds to Belgium and in arranging the PFLP courier of the funds military training in Lebanon.
In addition to the two known members of PFLP, they were joined by Barakat’s wife, who runs the organization “Samidoun”, which has ties to the PFLP and backs the efforts for boycotts, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel.
“I also ask that you consider putting in place a robust system to ensure that members of designated terrorist organizations such as the PFLP are not allowed to enter the European Parliament in the future,” wrote Erdan.
The Israeli press release noted that the Israeli Ministry of Strategic Affairs had recently published their “Terrorists in Suits” report that exposes over 100 connections between terrorists and organizations backing BDS. Barakat himself was named in the report, including for recruiting terrorists. The “Terrorists in Suits” report’s conclusions were sent to German Minister of Interior Horst Seehofer, and in late June the Germans banned Barakat’s political activities in Germany and said they would not renew his visa.
Erdan said in his letter to the President Sassoli that “Barakat, a PFLP
Central Committee member, was recently prohibited by German authorities from speaking at a political event due to his ties to terror… The European Parliament must not be used as a platform for members of murderous terrorist organizations.”
(By Joshua Spurlock, www.themideastupdate.com, July 22, 2019)