News

Fury as Palestinian woman, 79, who hijacked two planes and called Hamas terrorists ‘freedom fighters’ is billed as guest speaker at British fundraising event


A Palestinian woman who hijacked two planes and described the Hamas terrorists who slaughtered 1,200 people in Israel on October 7 as ‘freedom fighters’ has been billed as a guest speaker at a British fundraising event.

Leila Khaled, 79, is set to appear via videolink at a £25 charity dinner hosted by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC), which is the same group who projected ‘from the river to the sea’ onto Big Ben last month.

Khaled, described by event organisers as a ‘veteran Palestinian freedom fighter’, will be speaking at the fundraiser held by the PSC’s West Midlands branch in Sparkbrook, Birmingham.

Her appearance has sparked fury and concern among Jewish campaign groups who described the move as ‘extremely disturbing’.

Khaled remains a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine – which is listed as a terrorist organisation by the European Union, the US, Canada and Japan, but not the UK.

Khaled remains a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. She is pictured here in 1970, the year she tried to hijack a flight from Amsterdam to New York

Khaled remains a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. She is pictured here in 1970, the year she tried to hijack a flight from Amsterdam to New York

Khaled, described by event organisers as a 'veteran Palestinian freedom fighter', will be speaking at the fundraiser meal held by the PSC's West Midlands branch in Sparkbrook, Birmingham. Tickets are £25

Khaled, described by event organisers as a ‘veteran Palestinian freedom fighter’, will be speaking at the fundraiser meal held by the PSC’s West Midlands branch in Sparkbrook, Birmingham. Tickets are £25

In an interview last month, she claimed that Hamas terrorists did not target civilians in the horrific October 7 attacks. 

She told activist blog Green Left: ‘The freedom fighters did not attack ordinary people [on October 7], they attacked the military settlements. But when the borders were open, some other people took civilians.

‘Neither Israel nor the western media could prove that there were massacres. The civilian hostages [who were released in one of the deals negotiated] said they were dealt with very kindly. So why are they speaking like this about massacres? Just to say that the freedom fighters are terrorists.

‘So they made lies because they did not have any evidence. Even when [President] Biden showed some pictures, CNN said that he did not have evidence that this was what happened on October 7.’

There are also calls to block her from receiving a visa ahead of a scheduled talk at an even in Australia in June. 

Khaled, the world’s first female plane hijacker, first struck in 1969 when she took control of a plane from Rome to Tel Aviv. 

A photo of her holding an AK-47 rifle was published around the world, leading to her reportedly undergoing plastic surgery to hide her identity.

The following year, Khaled attempted to hijack another plane – this time from Amsterdam to New York. The aircraft was diverted to Heathrow and she was released in a hostage exchange.

Palestinian resistance veteran and two-time plane hijacker Leila Khaled speaks at a women's group forum in Manila on November 11, 2015

Palestinian resistance veteran and two-time plane hijacker Leila Khaled speaks at a women’s group forum in Manila on November 11, 2015

 Khaled continued to come back to the UK for talks until 2002, although the British embassy refused her a visa in 2005 when she tried to attend a meeting at a festival in Belfast.

Lord Walney, the government’s adviser on political violence and disruption, told The Times: ‘Even by their own recent standards, it is staggering that the PSC wants to give a platform to [Khaled].

‘The decision to host Leila Khaled underlines the importance of all mainstream party leaders making clear their MPs and councillors should not be engaging with the PSC while they are in the grip of this militancy.

 ‘The PSC’s hardline approach is undermining their own cause by opening the door to extremism and intimidation in communities.’

Khaled will be speaking alongside Huda Ammori, the co-founder of Palestine Action which protests against British companies it claims provide weapons to Israel.

A spokeswoman for the Campaign Against Antisemitism said: ‘Just when you thought that the PSC could not stoop any lower, they welcome a … plane hijacker to inspire their activists.

‘They tell the public that they are a purely peaceful organisation, but hosting Leila Khaled would seem to tell a different story. Given that it is the PSC which is mobilising the mobs marching down our streets, this latest move is extremely disturbing.’

Last month, MailOnline revealed that PSC director Ben Jamal organised projecting ‘from the river to the sea’ onto Big Ben.

The ‘deeply offensive’ slogan is widely seen as anti-semitic and a call to drive Jews out of Israel.

MailOnline has contacted PSC for comment. 



Source link

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button