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Denmark cancels aid to NGO, demands funding be returned following PMW story
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Denmark cancels aid to NGO,
demands funding be returned 
following PMW story on its terror glorification
  • Danish Foreign Minister: "I am outraged that the [Palestinian NGO] WATC, which claims to work for human rights, has not only glorified a terrorist but also abused the trust of a generous people like the Danish... Therefore, we will now also demand that the WATC return the Danish aid"
  • PA Foreign Ministry criticizes UN for condemning the name of the center and calls on the UN "to stop expressing the surprising and unacceptable positions and statements that the UN Secretary-General's office made... on the pretext that it bears the name of Martyr Dalal Mughrabi... These [UN] responses chose to adopt the Israeli narrative and terminology" 
  • Head of village council repeats name won't be changed, they'd rather return the money than give in to "conditional funding"
Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik

Following Norway, Denmark has likewise canceled funding to a Palestinian NGO and demanded its money be returned, after Palestinian Media Watch exposed that the NGO Women's Technical Affairs Committee (WATC) named a youth and women's center in the town of Burqa after terrorist murderer Dalal Mughrabi who led who led a bus hijacking and murder of 37 civilians, including 12 children in 1978.

Danish Foreign Minister Anders Samuelsen expressed his indignation over the glorification of murderer Dalal Mughrabi and demands Danish funding, which has been given to WATC in general, be returned:

"I am outraged that the WATC, which claims to work for human rights, has not only glorified a terrorist but also abused the trust of a generous people like the Danish. It is completely unacceptable and I can't distance myself strongly enough from it. Denmark and Danish tax kroner must under no circumstances be used for anything that glorifies or promotes terrorists in any way. Therefore, we will now also demand that the WATC return the Danish aid."
[Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs website, June 2, 2017]

The press release from the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs also stated that the ministry has ended all cooperation with the center because it "withheld crucial information" about the naming of the women's center "after a female Palestinian terrorist."

Denmark's decision follows similar condemnation by UN Secretary General António Guterres and Norway's Foreign Minister Børge Brende. 

The Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs meanwhile said that the UN's criticism of its terror glorification was adopting "the Israeli narrative and terminology" and therefore was an example of "troubling signals of changes that have been taking place recently in the functioning and language of the UN. The Palestinian Foreign Ministry called on the UN":

"to stop expressing the surprising and unacceptable positions and statements that UN Secretary-General [António Guterres'] office made regarding the women's center in the village of Burqa, in the Nablus district, on the pretext that it bears the name of Martyr (Shahida) Dalal Mughrabi (i.e., terrorist who led murder of 37, 12 of them children)... These [UN] responses chose to adopt the Israeli narrative and terminology... and in an unprecedented manner publishes extremely strange and severe notices, and gives troubling signals of changes that have been taking place recently in the functioning and language of the UN. The State of Palestine will track the issue in the most serious and responsible manner."
[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 1, 2017]

Following the official PA position and ignoring the loss of funding, the head of the village council, which named the center, is adamant about keeping the name. Chairman Sami Daghlas stressed that they would rather return the funding than change the name:

"If we are forced to choose between the aid and a name, we will return the aid to them, and we will not agree to conditional funding, because this type of funding kills the institutions... If we were to agree today to change the name [of the Dalal Mughrabi Center], that would whet their (i.e., funding countries) appetite for additional extortion, and tomorrow they will interfere in our names and change the names of our cities and villages to biblical names."
[The Palestinian Information Center, independent Palestinian news website, June 3, 2017]

The council chairman explained that the name was chosen to honor the terrorist:

"The choice of this name was meant to honor young Martyr Dalal Mughrabi, who resisted the occupation and hoped for the freedom and independence of her people... We, as Palestinians, are always proud of those who sacrificed for their homeland, whether they are Martyrs, prisoners, expelled, or wounded."
[Al-Quds Al-Arabi, London newspaper, May 29, 2017]

Fatah's youth movement Shabiba "saluted with honor and pride those responsible for the Martyr Dalal Mughrabi Center," and "condemned the position of the government of Norway and the UN against the women's center named after Martyr Dalal Mughrabi," stating that the funding stop is a "hostile position towards our people... [and] part of the outrageous siding with the occupation." [Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 1, 2017]

Implying that Norway knew all along about the naming of the center after the terrorist, Ghassan Daghlas, who is Director of the Settlements Issue in the Northern West Bank for the PA, said that:

"The center, which was established several months ago with $10,000 of Norwegian aid, did not encounter any problems when it was named after Dalal Mughrabi, and there was also no protest by the Norwegians regarding this."
[Donia Al-Watan, independent Palestinian news agency, May 30, 2017]

Village council head Sami Daghlas has stated that the council has not received any formal request from Norway to remove the logo of the Norwegian Representation, nor a request for the funding:

"We have heard that the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has demanded to remove its logo from the center and return the money that they gave. However, until now neither the [village] council nor the center have received anything official on this matter."

He further marginalized Norway's aid to the center, saying that the aid Norway provided was "a few thousand" (dollars apparently -Ed.), "which was spent on renovating and equipping the [center's] building." [Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 31, 2017]

The following are longer excerpts of the reports mentioned above:

Headline: "Dalal Mughrabi: A self-sacrificing fighter who causes the occupation to lose sleep and exposes the UN's double standards"
"Chairman of the Burqa Village Council Sami Daghlas... explained to a reporter from [the independent Palestinian news website] The Palestinian Information Center that... the position of the Palestinian [PA] Ministry of Foreign Affairs - which noted the [Dalal Mughrabi] Center (i.e., terrorist who led murder of 37, 12 of them children) in its statement - is not enough, and that it is necessary to carry out an active diplomatic operation and make contact with the Norwegians and invite them to visit the center so as to get to know the truth from up close.
He emphasized that the village residents adhere to this name, and added: 'If we are forced to choose between the aid and a name, we will return the aid to them, and we will not agree to conditional funding, because this type of funding kills the institutions in a sense.'
He added: 'If we were to agree today to change the name [of the Dalal Mughrabi Center], that would whet their appetite for additional extortion, and tomorrow they will interfere in our names and change the names of our cities and villages to biblical names.'"
[The Palestinian Information Center, independent Palestinian news website, June 3, 2017]

"The Ministry of Foreign Affairs called on the UN "to stop expressing the surprising and unacceptable positions and statements that UN Secretary-General [António Guterres'] office made regarding the women's center in the village of Burqa, in the Nablus district, on the pretext that it bears the name of Martyr (Shahida) Dalal Mughrabi (i.e., terrorist who led murder of 37, 12 of them children)... These [UN] responses chose to adopt the Israeli narrative and terminology... and in an unprecedented manner publishes extremely strange and severe notices, and gives troubling signals of changes that have been taking place recently in the functioning and language of the UN. The State of Palestine will track the issue in the most serious and responsible manner.'"
[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 1, 2017]

The article refers to a statement issued on May 28, 2017, by Stéphane Dujarric, spokesman of UN Secretary-General António Guterres, which reads: "The United Nations disassociated itself from the [Dalal Mughrabi] Centre once it learned the offensive name chosen for it and will take measures to ensure that such incidents do not take place in the future. The glorification of terrorism, or the perpetrators of heinous terrorist acts, is unacceptable under any circumstances. The UN has repeatedly called for an end to incitement to violence and hatred as they present one of the obstacles to peace. The United Nations support to this community ended last year and it has asked for the logo of UN Women to be removed immediately. Furthermore, the inauguration of the Centre took place after the UN's association with it."

Headline: "Fatah's Shabiba condemns the position of the UN and the government of Norway regarding the institution named after Dalal Mughrabi"
"The Fatah Shabiba [youth] movement in the West Bank condemned the position of the government of Norway and the UN against the women's center named after Martyr (Shahida) Dalal Mughrabi (i.e., terrorist who led murder of 37, 12 of them children) in the village of Burqa, northwest of Nablus, that determines that the funding and support must be stopped, on the pretext that the center encourages violence, incitement, and terror.
Fatah's Shabiba noted yesterday [May 31, 2017] in a statement that it would be more befitting if the UN - whose envoy Count [Folke] Bernadotte was murdered in 1948 by the Zionist Stern Gang - would check the public streets, squares, and parks in the occupation entity that are named after hundreds of war criminals, terrorists, and people involved in war crimes and crimes against humanity [and] civilians - children, women, and elderly - in Palestine, Lebanon, Syria, Egypt, and other states.
Fatah's Shabiba also condemned the position of Norway's government, which is led at the moment by the extremist right, and noted that this hostile position towards our people and its social institutions is part of the outrageous siding with the occupation. It proudly saluted the Norwegian people and our friends from the various progressive parties and institutions in Norway, who have always proved that they stand by truth, justice, and freedom.
Fatah's Shabiba saluted with honor and pride those responsible for the Martyr Dalal Mughrabi Center in Burqa, and emphasized its pride in the services it provides to young people and the educational programs it holds to raise awareness. It called on the national institutions providing sponsorship and the patriotic and dedicated wealthy Palestinians to support the center and provide all that it needs to continue providing its services. This is so that its activities will not be stopped for financial reasons, which would constitute a severe precedent in Palestinian society and submission to the programs of the occupation government and its media, which is a partner to the occupation and the crimes against our people.
Fatah's Shabiba ended its statement by emphasizing its constant pride in the Martyrs of Palestine, in the Martyrs of the Arab and Islamic nation, and in all of the free people in the world who have paid with their lives for freedom, justice, and independence. It proudly saluted the prisoners, wounded, and exiled, and all of our people's fighters who have paved the path to freedom and independence for our people. It also emphasized that our people's Martyrs are fighters for freedom and justice, and against racism and occupation, and that they are waving flags that point toward Jerusalem, the capital."
[Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 1, 2017]

Headline: "Daghlas: The Israeli campaign against the Dalal Mughrabi Center is meant to disrupt the relations with the European Union"
"Director of the settlements issue in the northern West Bank [for the PA] Ghassan Daghlas said that the Israeli campaign against the Dalal Mughrabi Center (i.e., terrorist who led murder of 37, 12 of them children) in the village of Burqa, west of Nablus, is meant to disrupt the relations between the European Union and the PA.
Daghlas explained in an interview with [the official PA] radio station The Voice of Palestine this morning [May 30, 2017] that the center, which was established several months ago with $10,000 of Norwegian aid, did not encounter any problems when it was named after Dalal Mughrabi, and there was also no protest by the Norwegians regarding this."
[Donia Al-Watan, independent Palestinian news agency, May 30, 2017]

Headline: "New Israeli incitement: The stopping of Norwegian aid to a center in Burqa"
"Israel is continuing the ongoing and varied actions of incitement against everything related to the Palestinians on the political, social, economic, and cultural level.
Recently the occupation state carried out incitement which led to the stopping of the financial aid from the government of Norway to the Dalal Mughrabi Center (i.e., terrorist who led murder of 37, 12 of them children) in the village of Burqa, west of Nablus, just because it bears the name of fighter Dalal Mughrabi.
Chairman of the Burqa Village Council Sami Daghlas said: 'It appears that the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs exerted pressure on Norway behind the scenes so that it would stop its aid to the center.'
He added: 'We have heard that the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has demanded to remove its logo from the center and return the money that they gave. However, until now neither the [village] council nor the center have received anything official on this matter.' He noted that the aid that Norway provided was a few thousand (dollars apparently -Ed.), which was spent on renovating and equipping the [center's] building, and that it was a single payment and no aid was provided to projects related to the center.
The Dalal Mughrabi Center was established four months ago and opened three weeks ago (on May 15, 2017 -Ed.). It is a community center for youth that was established in a partnership between the [village] council, the Women's Technical Affairs Committee (WATC), and the central elections committee, and with the aid of female members of the village council and municipality. The goal of the center is to encourage initiatives and to empower and encourage women so that they will be active in their society and participate in communal activity.
The name was proposed by the village residents in light of Martyr (Shahida) Dalal Mughrabi's sacrifice for her cause.
Daghlas noted that 'There are concerns in Burqa that the occupation's soldiers will raid the center, take control of its contents, destroy it, and close it, and all of the talk regarding the center is incitement fabricated by Israel.'
The Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs also took advantage of Norway's position in order to incite against the PA, and called on the international community to act like [Norway]."
[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 31, 2017]

Headline: "Israeli satisfaction over Norway's protest against naming a Palestinian center after Dalal Mughrabi"
"Chairman of the Burqa Local Council Sami Daghlas responded to the matter [of Norway's protest] by saying that the center was established four months ago in cooperation between the Burqa village council and the Women's Technical Affairs Committee (WATC) as an initiative of young women to support female members of the village and city councils. He noted that this center includes a group of 60 young men and women who hold volunteer and philanthropic activities [in order to] raise the awareness of young men and women regarding their rights and encourage their participation in public life.
He said that the choice of this name was meant to honor young Martyr (Shahida) Dalal Mughrabi (i.e., terrorist who led murder of 37, 12 of them children), who resisted the occupation and hoped for the freedom and independence of her people. He added: 'We, as Palestinians, are always proud of those who sacrificed for their homeland, whether they are Martyrs, prisoners, expelled, or wounded.' He also emphasized that considering the symbols of the Palestinian people and its leaders as terrorists is nothing but submission to the Israeli dictates and pressures. Daghlas called on 'our Norwegian friends to focus on the most important thing and understand what these young people are giving to their society, to honor our sensitivities as a people that has sacrificed hundreds of thousands of Martyrs, wounded, and prisoners, and to support our liberation struggle against the occupation, which terrorizes us and kills our children and young people in cold blood every day.'"
[Al-Quds Al-Arabi, London newspaper, May 29, 2017]

Headline: "The Palestinian Non-Governmental Organizations Network rejects the position of Norway regarding the Martyr Dalal Mughrabi Center in Burqa"
"The Palestinian Non-Governmental Organizations Network yesterday [May 31, 2017] expressed its absolute opposition to the position of Norway, which demanded to remove the name of Martyr (Shahida) Dalal Mughrabi (i.e., terrorist who led murder of 37, 12 of them children) and return the funding that it transferred for the benefit of a local center that was established in the town of Burqa, in the Nablus district of the northern West Bank...
It emphasized that the principles of international and humanitarian aid determine that any project that is carried out belongs to the Palestinian people, because the responsibility for the continuation of its activity and management is a social responsibility, and that it is the right of the government of Norway to ask to remove its logo from the center, although it has no right to ask for the money back that was invested in it according to the agreement on the matter.
The network said in its statement that [Norway's] position constitutes capitulation to the Israeli extortion and the pressures exerted by institutions supporting the occupation...
The network demanded that the government of Norway take back this strange request, which is based on adopting a one-sided narrative in advance, and ignoring the Palestinian narrative without relying on facts.
The network explained that the center was renovated with the aid of the Women's Technical Affairs Committee (WATC) and in cooperation with the elections committee, to encourage women to participate in the municipal elections... and that the Norwegian donation did not exceed a one-time payment of $10,000 for the purpose of furnishing the center, while the remaining expenses were covered by the local society."
[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 1, 2017]