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U.N. agency pitches in on, then disavows campaign glorifying terrorist

JTA

February 10, 2011 | 2:26 pm

A television campaign airing in Arab countries to address women’s issues, produced in cooperation with a United Nations agency, glorifies a female Palestinian terrorist.

The United Nations Population Fund, an international development agency that promotes a life of health and equal opportunity for all, on Thursday disassociated itself from the campaign, The Jerusalem Post reported.

Abubakar Dungus, a spokesperson for the Population Fund, told the Post that it was not consulted or involved in choosing the featured women.

The “White Hands Campaign” was produced by the Arab Producers Union for TV and is being aired on more than 50 Arab television stations, including the official channel of the Palestinian Authority.

One of the model women introduced in the campaign is Dalal Mughrabi, who in 1978 directed the hijacking of two buses on Israel’s Coastal Road between Haifa and Tel Aviv, which led to the murder of 38 Israelis, including 13 children.

According to Palestinian Media Watch, a watchdog agency that has been monitoring the campaign, Mughrabi “was venerated in the clip as a role model for ‘martyrdom’ and ‘victory over enmity.’ “

“As long as a terrorist like Mughrabi occupies a place in the pantheon of Arab heroes, a genuine peace in the region, based on trust and mutual respect, cannot be achieved,” David Harris, executive director of the American Jewish Committee, said in a statement, which called holding Mughrabi up as a role model “disgraceful” and called for the United Nations to disassociate itself from the campaign.

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