X

Former UK Labour Party Leader Accepts Award From British Hamas Support Group

January 11th, 2022 16:38

As part of its 18 Decem­ber 2021 “PalFes­ti­val,” the Pales­tin­ian Forum in Britain (PFB) award­ed for­mer UK Labour Par­ty leader Jere­my Cor­byn its high­est award for his efforts in help­ing Pales­tine and Pales­tin­ian refugees. Accord­ing to an arti­cle on the Islamist-friend­ly news por­tal Mid­dle East Eye:

Address­ing hun­dreds of peo­ple at the organ­i­sa­tion’s annu­al con­ven­tion, Cor­byn said he was “hon­oured” to receive the award and told the audi­ence that sup­port for Pales­tine was strong in the Labour par­ty.  “The Pales­tin­ian peo­ple have suf­fered like no oth­er in that they have been under occu­pa­tion for many decades, and many are liv­ing in refugee camps ever since 1948 in dif­fer­ent coun­tries around the region, but par­tic­u­lar­ly in Lebanon,” said Cor­byn. “I think it is impor­tant to recog­nise an enti­ty known as Pales­tine, a state of Pales­tine, and I was proud to present a man­i­festo in the elec­tion two years ago to the British peo­ple which includ­ed uncon­di­tion­al recog­ni­tion of Palestine.”

Read the rest here.

Accord­ing to the arti­cle, Cor­byn used his speech to reaf­firm Labour’s sup­port for Pales­tini­ans despite the par­ty lead­er­ship’s recent crit­i­cism of the Boy­cott, Divest­ment, and Sanc­tions (BDS) move­ment as “anti-Zion­ist antisemitism.”

A pho­to of the event shows Cor­byn stand­ing next to PFB pub­lic rela­tions spokesper­son Zaher Birawi, a promi­nent British pro-Hamas activist, and Mus­lim Asso­ci­a­tion of Britain (MAB) Pres­i­dent Raghad Al-Tikri­ti, sis­ter of British Glob­al Mus­lim Broth­er­hood (GMB) leader Anas Al-Tikri­ti. At the event, Raghad Al-Tikri­ti was award­ed a prize for “her con­tin­u­ous efforts in help­ing the Pales­tin­ian cause in the UK.” The MAB is the main orga­ni­za­tion of the GMB in the UK.

Jere­my Cor­byn is a harsh crit­ic of Israeli poli­cies on Pales­tine and, in 2020, was sus­pend­ed from the Labour par­ty over his reac­tion to an Equal­i­ty and Human Rights Com­mis­sion report on alle­ga­tions of anti­semitism with­in Labour. He has a his­to­ry of speak­ing at events and demon­stra­tions where anti-Semit­ic slo­gans were chant­ed and has repeat­ed­ly met with Hamas offi­cials. In a 2009 speech, he called mem­bers of the ter­ror­ist orga­ni­za­tion “friends.” Cor­byn has since said he regret­ted the remarks.

The PFB is part of the UK Mus­lim Broth­er­hood and Hamas sup­port infra­struc­ture. PFB pub­lic rela­tions spokesper­son Zaher Birawi is a long-time Direc­tor of the Pales­tin­ian Return Cen­tre, des­ig­nat­ed by the Israeli gov­ern­ment and described as “Hamas’ orga­ni­za­tion­al branch in Europe.” In May 2021, the Glob­al Influ­ence Oper­a­tions Report (GIOR) report­ed that Birawi par­tic­i­pat­ed in a “Vir­tu­al Iftar” of the UK Labour Mus­lim Net­work, which seeks to pro­mote British Mus­lim engage­ment with the Labour Par­ty. This event also fea­tured Zara Mohammed, who in Jan­u­ary 2021 was named the first female Sec­re­tary-Gen­er­al of the Mus­lim Coun­cil of Britain, one of the most influ­en­tial Mus­lim orga­ni­za­tions in the UK and that usu­al­ly acts in con­cert with the GMB.

The Hamas char­ter says that it is “one of the wings of the Mus­lim Broth­ers in Pales­tine,” and a Hamas jour­nal­ist has acknowl­edged the role that the “inter­na­tion­al Mus­lim Broth­er­hood” has played in pro­vid­ing funds for the pur­chase of weapons. Hamas is known to be sup­port­ed finan­cial­ly and polit­i­cal­ly by the GMB.