April 2, 2017
By Aidan Fishman
Campus Advocacy Coordinator
B’nai Brith Canada
VANCOUVER – An anti-Israel student group at the University of British Columbia facilitated the sale of scarves with Hamas-affiliated slogans at a campus event, B’nai Brith Canada has learned.
At a March 17 event called “A Night with Palestine” hosted by Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights (SPHR) at the Abdul Ladha Science Student Centre, some attendees wore Palestinian scarves, or kaffiyehs, with the Arabic slogan, “Jerusalem is ours – We are coming!” alongside an image of the al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem. Photos taken at the event show the same scarves being sold in order to raise money.
The slogan attracted global nooriety in 2014 when Malik Obama, former U.S. President Barack Obama’s half-brother, was pictured wearing a scarf with the same slogan while embracing representatives of the Hamas terrorist group.
This revelation comes as UBC students go to the polls on April 3 for a referendum on whether to support the anti-Israel boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement initiated by SPHR.
“The promotion of anything associated with Hamas by a student group is unacceptable,” said Michael Mostyn, Chief Executive Officer of B’nai Brith Canada. “This is especially worrying in the context of a referendum which, on an identical question in 2015, led to antisemitic incidents and the marginalization of Jewish students at UBC. We have made the UBC administration aware of our concerns regarding this group.”
According to SHR, the scarves were sold in order to raise money for a group called “Youth for Palestine Canada.” That group’s Facebook page features an image of smiling children posing with Ahmed Yassin, the deceased founder and spiritual guide of Hamas. The slogan on the image reads, “You have made your sons steadfast, oh Yassin!”