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U.N. Agency Teachers Praised Hamas Oct. 7 Attacks in Group Chat, Watchdog Finds

The U.N. Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) building in Gaza. Photo by Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash90.
The U.N. Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) building in Gaza. Photo by Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash90.

By: Jake Smith, Daily Caller News Foundation

Teachers in the United Nations Relief Works Agency (UNRWA) made antisemitic comments and celebrated the Oct. 7 Hamas terrorist attacks against Israel in group chats, according to a watchdog investigation report released Wednesday.

UNRWA is the primary U.N. agency responsible for providing humanitarian services to Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip and other Middle Eastern nations, including education, health care, emergency aid and social services. A group message channel of over 3,000 UNRWA teachers was discovered to be filed with posts praising Hamas as “heroes” for killing and raping civilians in Israel on Oct. 7, with some posts calling for the execution of the remaining hostages in Gaza, according to UN Watch, a nongovernmental watchdog agency.

“This is the motherlode of UNRWA teachers’ incitement to Jihadi terrorism,” Hillel Neuer, executive director of UN Watch, said in a statement Wednesday.

Examples include one UNRWA teacher, Waseem Ula, who has made several posts in the group chat celebrating Hamas and calling for the murder of Israelis, according to UN Watch. One of his posts includes a photo of a suicide bomber vest with the caption, “Wait, sons of Judaism.” In another post, he refers to terrorist Akran Abu Hasanen as his “friend” and “brother.”

Another UNRWA teacher, Abdallah Mehjez, seeks to aid Hamas by encouraging Palestinians in the group chat not to heed Israel’s warnings to move out of areas in Gaza that may be targeted in military operations, according to UN Watch. Prior to his career with UNRWA, Mehjez worked as a journalist for the BBC.

UNRWA teacher Shatha Husam Al Nawajha asked in the group chat that “God protect” Hamas in their war against Israel, according to UN Watch. When another member of the group chat proudly exclaimed that Hamas “breastfed jihad and resistance with their mothers’ milk,” Nawajha went on to say, “May Allah grant them victory.”

Over 150 UNRWA staff have been identified by UN Watch as spreading antisemitism and racism online in roughly the last decade, according to a separate report. There have been calls from the public and from lawmakers to shut down or dramatically reform UNRWA for its affiliation with Hamas and antisemitism, which has been reported on multiple occasions by UN Watch.

UNRWA did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Related Story: Dozens of U.N. Palestinian Schools Celebrate Terrorism, Teach Children How to Become ‘Martyrs’: Report

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