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Terrorist commander of Karine A weapons ship glorified on PA TV

Official Palestinian Authority TV  |

Official PA TV program Giants of Endurance, a special episode broadcast from the town of Allar in the Tulkarem district

Official PA TV host: "We will move on to the family of heroic prisoner Omar Al-Akkawi (i.e., terrorist, attempted to smuggle weapons). With us today is his sister and a group of people who love Al-Akkawi. We will send him all the love and all of the blessings. Allah willing, you and all of the prisoners, my brother Omar, will soon be out of the prisons. Forgive me, I send greetings to the oldest of the prisoners, Fuad Al-Shubaki (i.e., terrorist, attempted to smuggle weapons), and every Palestinian fighter within the occupation's prisons."

Sufyan Shadid, nephew of Omar Al-Akkawi: "Greetings to the Captain, my uncle Omar Al-Akkawi, this fighter who at a young age joined Fatah, the Palestinian National Liberation Movement. He completed his studies as a marine engineer and afterwards became a captain in the navy. And this great and mighty fighter always told us – quoting the [PA] president – that the battle with the occupier will not end [except] when Palestine is liberated. He was involved until the last moment in the shipment of weapons to Palestine, and the last of them was the ship Karine A, which stirred up the world. As [former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel] Sharon and [former Israeli Army Chief of Staff Shaul] Mofaz said, if it had entered Gaza then it would have changed the balance of power in Palestine. Greetings to you Honorable General, we thank His Honor [PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas] for raising your rank to general recently in August [2018], you deserve it!

Host: “This is certainly appreciation for our fighters.”

Sufyan Shadid:You and all of our prisoners within the prisons deserve it. We will tell this occupier and send it the message: It does not matter how many decisions you make in the Israeli Parliament and outside of it that the prisoners’ allowances (mukhassasat) will be stopped (refers to law to deduct terrorist salaries from PA taxes collected by Israel; see note below –Ed.). We say to you the occupier, to all of the generals and your government, that the prisoners in Palestine are one of the basic principles – in their release, in their allowances, and in the pride for their struggle. We are proud of our Martyrs (Shahids), our prisoners, our heroes, and our female prisoners, whom we bless with all of the blessings… Honorable General, we are proud of you and all of the prisoners. You will always be in our memory and our awareness.”

Omar Al-Akkawi - serving a 25-year prison term. He was the commander of the Karine A weapons’ ship that attempted to smuggle 50 tons of illegal weapons to the Palestinian Authority in 2002.

Fuad Al-Shubaki - senior PA official serving a 20-year prison term. He was behind the attempt to smuggle 50 tons of illegal weapons to the Palestinian Authority aboard the Karine A weapons’ ship in 2002.

Karine A - In January 2002, Israeli army forces seized Karine A, a ship that attempted to smuggle 50 tons of weapons including Katyusha rockets, anti-tank missiles and explosives, into the Palestinian Authority. The commander of the ship was Omar Al-Akkawi, a Fatah member and PA official. Senior PA official Fuad Al-Shubaki was behind the smuggle attempt.

Israel's Anti "Pay-for-Slay" Law - Israeli law stating that the PA payments to terrorists and the families of dead terrorists is a financial incentive to terror. The law instructs the state to deduct and freeze the amount of money the PA pays in salaries to imprisoned terrorists and families of "Martyrs" from the tax money Israel collects for the PA. Should the PA stop these payments for a full year, the Israeli government would have the option of giving all or part of the frozen money to the PA. The law was enacted by the Israeli Parliament on July 2, 2018. During the parliamentary vote, the law's sponsor Avi Dichter said: “The Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee received much help in its deliberations... from Palestinian Media Watch who provided us with authentic data that enabled productive and professional deliberations, nuances that are very difficult to achieve without precise data.” [Israeli Parliament website, July 2, 2018] In accordance with the law, as of September 2021 Israel’s Security Cabinet had ordered the freeze of 1.857 billion shekels ($580.15 million) - the sum equivalent to the PA payments to terrorists in 2018, 2019, and 2020.