June 19, 2017
Minneapolis, MN – Steve Hunegs, executive director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas (JCRC), issued the following statement:
Hadas Malka, z”l (Photo from The Times of Israel)
“The Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas (JCRC) condemns Friday’s act of terrorism in which Border Police Staff Sgt. Hadas Malka z”l, 23, was stabbed to death outside Jerusalem’s Old City just moments after sending a final selfie to her friends wishing them ‘Shabbat Shalom to my loving friends.’ Four other people were also wounded in this coordinated attack by three Palestinian terrorists.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with Hadas Malka’s family, as well as the other victims and their families, and all the people of Israel as they endure the ongoing ‘Stabbing Intifada,’ which has left 43 Israelis, two visiting Americans, and one British student, dead since its outbreak in September 2015.
“Outrageously, as a matter of Palestinian law, the families of the three terrorists responsible for Hadas Malka’s murder will be handsomely rewarded by the Palestinian Authority (PA). This practice of paying for terrorism must end and it is for this reason that the JCRC urges Congress to expeditiously pass the ‘Taylor Force Act,’ which conditions ongoing American aid to the PA on ending its policy of financially rewarding terrorists and their families.
“This important legislation is named in memory of Taylor Force, a West Point graduate and U.S. Army veteran, who was also stabbed to death by Palestinian terrorists while visiting Tel Aviv last year. Notably, though American taxpayers provide the PA with $300-500 million annually, the PA directs approximately $300 million each year to imprisoned and released terrorists and their families at amounts well above and beyond financial assistance to needy Palestinian families.
“This heinous policy of financially rewarding terrorism is a tremendous obstacle to peace and reconciliation between Israelis and Palestinians. Sadly, such glorification of violence is not limited to such payments as Palestinian streets, parks, soccer tournaments, etc. are routinely named after the most notorious of terrorists. For example, very recently ‘Martyr Khaled Nazzal Square’ was inaugurated in Jenin with PA officials in attendance. Khaled Nazzal was responsible for the Ma’alot Massacre in which 22 Israeli children and 4 Israeli adults were murdered in 1974.
“By passing the Taylor Force Act and demanding that the PA stop inciting Palestinians to commit unspeakable acts of violence, Congress can do its part to honor the memory of Taylor Force, Hadas Malka and all those who’ve been killed in the century long campaign to deny the Jewish people their natural right to be a free people in their own land.”
As the public affairs voice of the Jewish community, the JCRC fights anti-Semitism and prejudice, advocates for Israel, provides Holocaust education, promotes tolerance and social justice, and builds bridges across the Jewish and broader communities.