Students at a leading Palestinian university earlier this week reportedly staged a mock kidnapping and execution of Israeli soldiers on campus in celebration of the 28th anniversary of the Hamas terrorist group.
The men participating in the event at Birzeit University were masked and held automatic weapons. As the “Israeli soldier” was made to kneel in front of a row of armed and masked men, the scene struck a disturbing similarity to Islamic State group execution videos.
Photos of the campus street theater were posted Thursday on Twitter by Ofir Gendelman, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s spokesman for the Arabic media.
This is how STUDENTS at Bir Zeit U in the PA celebrated Hamas' 28th anniv, w/ weapons & mock executions of Israelis. pic.twitter.com/BUlS43Hrxu— Ofir Gendelman (@ofirgendelman) December 17, 2015
Israel Radio’s Arab affairs analyst, Gal Berger, posted other photos that showed the men wearing red keffiyeh headscarves and green headbands associated with Hamas, which the U.S. and Israel classify as a terrorist group.
בין כותלי אוניברסיטת ביר זית ליד רמאללה: חמאס חוגג 28 שנה עם רעולי פנים חמושים, והצגה על הרג חיילים וחטיפת חייל (3) pic.twitter.com/QJbHktQTqG— Gal Berger גל ברגר (@galberger) December 16, 2015
Birzeit, located near Ramallah in the West Bank, is considered one of the top universities in the Palestinian Authority. Last year, it was revealed by a left-wing reporter for the Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz that the university had a policy of keeping Israeli Jews off campus.
The reporter, Amira Hass, who is a prominent proponent of the Palestinian cause and sharp critic of Israel, wrote that she was ejected from an academic conference on campus last year and was also denied entry to an Arabic-language course there. She later confirmed it was because of a campus policy not to allow Israeli Jews.
To commemorate the anniversary of its founding, Hamas issued a statement vowing to continue the armed struggle against Israel “until almighty Allah grants us triumph."
"Hamas vows to remain faithful to the liberation of Palestine and to keep its weapon directed at the Israeli occupation only," read the statement, as reported by the Jerusalem Post.