Fontenay, 6th June 2011
Mr José Manuel Barroso
President of the European Commission
1049 Brussels, Belgium
As European members (French, Italian, German, British and Spanish) of the International Alliance Against Terrorism network, we have been alerted by our Israeli partner about the payment of a monthly salary to terrorists, jailed in Israel, by the Palestinian Authority. A law is said to have been passed last April to that effect.
It is clearly not a humanitarian gesture but a promotion of terrorism, since Palestinians detained for car stealing are excluded from this benefit.
Terrorism, the targeted murder of civilians, is thus treated as a honorable profession deserving fair wages.
We naturally wish all prisoners to be judged in fair trials and, if condemned, to get humane detention conditions. But we are shocked by this measure which revolts the families of the victims of these terrorists.
We are worried too, as this kind of incitement may bring about fresh outbreak of terror.
The Palestinian Authority has unfortunately sent many messages pointing to terror incitement.
A ceremony broadcast by Palestinian television on May 20 distinguished the families of terrorists sentenced to life imprisonment for terror attacks targeting civilians. Among them was the family of Khaled Asakra, condemned for murdering a French tourist in a Bethlehem restaurant in April 1991.
The European Union contributes over 150 million euros to funding the Palestinian Authority.
We do not want this money, which should help the Palestinian people, to be misappropriated and used to pay wages to terrorists.
Terrorism is one of the scourges of our time.
During May, according to our data, terror acts killed 614 civilians throughout the world and injured 1351.
Whatever his nationality and the cause he champions, a terrorist may be called a criminal against humanity for targeting civilians.
Sir, the condemnation of terrorism is meaningless if it tolerates its justification.
What steps are you going to take to prevent our euros to help pay wages to terrorists?
Looking forward to a strong gesture from you, we pray you receive, Sir, our respectful regards.
Huguette Chomski Magnis, Spokesperson for the International Alliance Against Terrorism
Michael Gallagher, for the Omagh Support and Self Help Group, Northern Ireland
Dr Richard Rossin, President of Mouvement Pour la Paix et Contre le Terrorisme, France
Reiner Schleicher, for NzT, Nein zum Terrorismus, Germany