CIJ News: MP Iqra Khalid attended Land Day event organized by pro-Intifada Palestine House
Liberal MP Iqra Khalid attended on Saturday, April 15, 2017 the annual Gala of the Palestine House marking the Land Day that symbolizes the Palestinian commitment to defend the land and to “liberate” Palestine. Fadlu Michael (فضلو ميخائيل), the chairperson of the Palestine House awarded MP Khalid a “thanks and appreciation” plaque (click HERE and HERE).
On January 18, 2016, MP Khalid met with senior members of the Canadian Palestinian community and board members of the Palestine House including its deputy chairperson Dr. Nazih Khatatba who serves also as the editor of Meshwar newspaper.
The Palestine House was de-funded in 2012 by the federal government for what then Minister of Citizenship and Immigration Jason Kenney referred to as a “pattern of support for extremism.”
Minister Kenney’s spokesperson told The News via e-mail (February 2012) that “Palestine House has in the last few years aligned itself with terrorist causes, including celebrating the release of terrorists and honouring the founder of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), one of the groups that formed the Palestine Liberation Organization and in the 1960s and ’70s, was responsible for numerous armed attacks and aircraft hijackings.” In response Palestine House spokesperson Samir Jabbour said then that “Palestine House categorically denounces all forms of terrorism or extremism” and its “positions on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict are in line with universal values of human rights… [and] “are very close to the positions of the government as stated on its website.”
On October 14, 2015 the Palestine house posted on its official Facebook an invitation to its planned rally. The English version read the following:
“In solidarity and support of the Struggle of the Palestinian people against the Israeli occupation and aggression.”
The Arabic version of the invitation used the term intifada:
“Protest rally in solidarity and support of Palestine Intifada (انتفاضة). In cooperation with solidarity movements with Palestine in the area of Toronto, the Palestine House invites you to to participate in the solidarity rally with al-Quds and Palestine Intifada (انتفاضة). It will take place on Friday October 16 at 6pm in front of the Israeli Consulate in Toronto.”
Palestine House Facebook post – October 13, 2017
The Palestinian al-Quds Intifada, also dubbed the Knife Intifada, is supported and directed by the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah (the Palestinian Authority-PLO-Fatah) and Gaza (Hamas).
On January 19, 2016 the Palestine House celebrated the 14th birthday of the Palestinian child terrorist Ahmed Manasrah and called for his immediate release from the Israeli jail.
Armed with kitchen knives, Ahmaed Manasrah, then 13 years old, went on October 12, 2015 with his cousin Hassan Manasra, 15, to Jerusalem’s Pisgat Zeev neighborhood to attack Jews. The two Palestinian teenagers stabbed two Israelis, a 13-year-old, who was critically injured; and a 25-year-old, who was moderately injured. Hassan Manasra was shot dead by security forces after charging at police with a knife and Ahmaed Manasrah, was hit by a car, recovered after being treated in an Israeli hospital and later was convicted of two charges of attempted murder and sentenced to 12 years in prison.
The event in honour of Manasrah was held at the Palestine House offices in Mississauga with the attendance of Chairman of the Palestine House, Fadlo Mechael, the Vice Chair, Nazih Khataba, other board members, parents and children.
A birthday cake was baked in honour of Ahmad Manasrah and decorated with the following message written on it: “Happy Birthday. Freedom. Ahmad Manasrah, 13 years old boy, shot and caged by Israel.”
The event featured children holding colourful balloons and posters that read in Arabic: “Palestine House Canada [flags of Palestine and Canada], Free Ahmad Manasrah, Solidarity campaign with the child prisoner.”
A little girl greeted Manasrah on his birthday by reading the following message in French and English:
“Hi everyone, I’m Maryam Muhanad. We are Canadians Palestinians children came today to celebrate the 14th birth of Palestinian prisoner hero Ahamd Manasrah. We ask all the nations in the world for freedom to Ahmad Manasrah. Free, Free Ahmad Manasrah. Free, Free Ahmad Manasrah.”
On Saturday, February 20, 2016, during a demonstration in downtown Toronto, several dozens of anti-Israel activists, including senior board members of Palestine House and their children held a rally during which they held pictures of Palestinian “martyrs” who they claimed were “executed” by Israel. CIJnews was able to conclusively verify that most of the so-called “martyrs” were, in fact, terrorists, including Hamas and Fatah operatives, who were killed while trying to carry out terrorist attacks against Israelis or during violent clashes with the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF).
In January 2017, the Palestine House held a event with the attendance of Toronto Imam Ahmed Shehab commemorating Archbishop Hilarion Capucci who was sentenced on December 9, 1974 to 12 years in prison. Capucci, who as the head of the Greek Catholic Church in Jerusalem was arrested in 1974 after using his Mercedes sedan to smuggle arms to Palestinian terrorists. The Israeli security forces found in his vehicle four Kalashnikov rifles, two pistols, 220 pounds of dynamite and several detonators. The New York Times reported that investigators said the archbishop had been involved in a plan to fire three Katyusha rockets toward Jerusalem during a May 1974 visit by Secretary of State Henry A. Kissinger.
On December 10, 2016 the Palestine House held an event commemorating Cuba’s former president Fidel Castro who Castro was heavily criticized by governments and human rights organizations for depriving Cubans of their basic rights and involvement in political exectutions.
Nazih Khatatba, a board member of the Palestine House at least until December 2016, openly sympathized with the Palestinian “struggle” which includes activities and operations that are deemed by Israel, US, Canada and the West as acts of terrorism.
In an editorial titled “al-Quds Operation and the Quiet Intifada” published on November 28, 2014, Khatatba portrayed the massacre of 4 rabbis in a Jerusalem synagogue by Palestinian terrorists who hacked their victims to death with meat cleavers as a “courageous and qualitative” operation. One of the victims was Howie Rothman, an Israeli Canadian, was died of his wounds a year after he was struck in his head and neck with a cleaver.
On the same day the Jerusalem massacre occurred, Khatatba slammed the Palestinian President for issuing an official announcement condemning (however faintly) the attack.
A few days prior to the Jerusalem massacre, Khatatba justified the ‘run-over’ and stabbing attacks against Israeli Jews and overtly supported launching a Palestinian armed Intifada (war) against Israel.
In a editorial (Meshwar, Issue 106, June 13, 2014, P. 5), Khatatba called the Palestinian prisoners incarcerated in Israeli jail “freedom prisoners” and “freedom fighters”, even though many of them were convicted (and confessed) of terror-related crimes, including murder of civilians.
For one of his editorials (Meshwar, Issue 103, May 2, 2014, p. 5), Khatatba chose the following heading: “Al-Aqsa [Mosque] and [the City of] al-Quds [Jerusalem] are in need for mujahideen [jihad fighters], not tourists.”
Khatatba also praised the Lebanese terrorist Samir Quntar who was killed in an Israeli airstrike last December for his “bold offensive operation”. What Khatatba called a “bold offensive operation” was a aterrorist attack in 1979 during which Quntar murdered an Israeli civilian and crushed the skull of his 4 year-old daughter with the butt of his rifle.
In 2014, The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) submitted to Peel Region Police several complaints of possible hate crimes allegedly committed by Meshwar newspaper. The complaints documented cases of anti Jewish rhetoric including sympathizing with a terrorist attack (Jerusalem massacre), posting an article questioning the veracity of the Holocaust and a cartoon that depicted the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu drinking the blood of Palestinian children. No charges have been laid against the Palestine House.
CSIS officers visit Toronto-based Meshwar newspaper’s offices following pro intifada articles – click HERE
MP Iqra Khalid meets with board members of the pro intifada Palestine House – click HERE
MP Omar Alghabra attended an event organized by “pro-Intifada” group – click HERE
This article was originally published on the CIJ News website on April 23, 2017, and can be viewed on their site by clicking here.