Dutch Groups Cancel Speeches by Palestinian Activist Israel Convicted of Terrorism

Rasmea Odeh was jailed for life, but in 1980, she was released in a prisoner exchange

Rasmea Odeh outside the Theodore Levin U.S. Courthouse in Detroit on Tuesday, April 25, 2017.
Max Ortiz/AP

Two organizations in the Netherlands have canceled their speaking invitations to a Palestinian ex-terrorist following protests.

A labor association for Turkish immigrants, HTIB, told De Telegraaf on Tuesday that it is bowing out of hosting Rasmea Odeh this week. HTIB Chairperson Mustafa Ayranci said this following the publication of a report that criticized the move, in light of HTIB’s receiving state subsidies.

HTIB had volunteered to host Odeh after Amsterdam’s Nasau Church rescinded its invitation to her while she was visiting the Netherlands as the guest of two Marxist groups, Anakbayan-Europe and Revolutionary Unity.

Odeh spent 10 years in an Israeli prison for her role in a 1969 bombing attack at a Jerusalem supermarket that killed two Hebrew University students, Leon Kanner and Eddie Joffe. Israel jailed Odeh for life, but she was released in a prisoner exchange with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine in 1980 and immigrated to the United States from Jordan. She has said her confession to the bombing was the result of severe torture by Israeli security forces.

Odeh obtained her U.S. immigrant visa in 1994 and her citizenship in 2004. In both applications, she failed to disclose her arrest and convictions in the bombings. She pleaded guilty to falsifying her immigration applications and was deported to Jordan in September.