Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Secretary-General Saeb Erekat said Hamas and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) “are not terrorist organizations” at a United Nations event marking “50 years of occupation” by Israel in the disputed territories, The Jerusalem Post reported.
“We are a people who strive to achieve our independence, and our choice in the PLO…is to achieve peace peacefully through negotiations,” Erekat said.
Israeli Ambassador to the U.N. Danny Danon blasted Erekat and other Palestinian leaders, saying they “have no shame.”
“These are lies and incitement from those who are paying terrorists to kill innocent Israelis,” he said. “These obsessive attempts to besmirch our good name will not change the fact that the Palestinian leadership refuses to end their support for terror.”
Prior to the U.N. event, Danon’s office released evidence showing the two organizations behind the event, Al Haq and the Al Mezan Center for Human Rights, have ties to the Hamas and Popular PFLP terror groups. Most recently, the PFLP was behind the June 16 murder of an Israeli Border Police officer, Hadas Malka.
“The U.N. is colluding with supporters of terror seeking to harm Israel,” said Danon. “It is beyond comprehension that U.N. funds are supporting organizations which aid terrorists and incite against Israel.”
Stephane Dujarric, a spokesperson for U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres, said Guterres was “aware of the position of the Israeli government” and that the event “is not something that is being sponsored” by the U.N.’s leadership.