Israeli minister calls for action against civil groups with Hamas ties

Diaspora Affairs and Combating Antisemitism Minister Amichai Chikli provided a detailed account to international ministers of close to 10 countries, such as Canada’s Defense Minister Bill Blair and Italy’s Interior Minister Matteo Piantedosi, calling for action against civil groups with ties to Hamas.

In addition to the letter, sent mainly to interior ministers around the world, a specific report outlined unsettling behaviors by pro-Hamas figures in their respective countries.

The letters were obtained by The Jerusalem Post. The ministry acknowledged their existence and content.

One of the individuals highlighted in the report to the Italian minister was Mahmud Hanun, who, among other roles, is the head of the Charity Association for Solidarity with the Palestinian People (ABSPP) in Italy, which was a member of the Union of Good coalition. The Union of Good was designated in Israel and the United States in 2008 as a terrorism enabler due to allegations of channeling funds to Hamas. In 2021, the ABSPP accounts were closed due to suspicious transactions.

The ministry’s report shed light on Hanun’s activities.

Amichai Chikli speaks at the AJC Global Forum in Tel Aviv, on June 14, 2023 (credit: MIRIAM ALSTER/FLASH90)

“Hanun posted in March 2019 that Abu Laila was murdered by the ‘Zionist-Nazi army,’” the report detailed, referring to Omar Abu Laila, who was killed carrying out a fatal attack on Israelis. It further described how Hanun eulogized teenage terrorists in Jerusalem through a song glorifying their violent acts.

“In September 2020, the assailant Ahmed Jarar, the head of the cell that killed Rabbi Raziel Shevach, was memorialized through a song,” Chikli conveyed, pointing out the connection between Jarar and his father, Nasser, a senior member of Hamas’s “military wing.”

In his letter to Blair, Chikli wrote, “Unfortunately, Hamas was not alone in perpetrating this despicable terrorist act. Iran funded it, as well as the Islamic Jihad and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, who took an active part.

“It’s worth noting that in Canada, there has been an organization operating for approximately two years, known as SAMIDOUN, which is declared to be a ‘civilian arm’ of the PFLP.”

According to the report, representatives of the designated organization are active in many countries in Europe and North America, led by Khaled Barakat, who is part of the leadership of PFLP abroad.

“Barakat is involved with establishing militant cells and motivating terrorist activity in Judea and Samaria, as well as abroad,” Chikli said.

“We expect that they will be designated as a terrorist organization in Canada as well,” he urged, invoking a decisive stand against the propagation of terrorism through civil entities.

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