Iran Changes Street Named After Terrorist; U.S. Should Pressure Palestinian Arabs To Do Same
January 7, 2004

NEW YORK- In response to Egyptian pressure, the Iranian government has changed the name of a street that was named after one of the assassins of Egyptian leader Anwar Sadat. The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) is urging the Bush administration to pressure the Palestinian Authority to change the names of streets and summer camps that are named after Palestinian Arab killers of Israelis and Americans.

“Iran’s decision proves that international pressure can work,” said ZOA National President Morton A. Klein. “Egypt refused to restore normal relations with Iran until the street’s name was changed, so the Iranians finally gave in. The Bush administration should use its $213-million in annual aid as leverage to pressure the Palestinian Authority to change the names of its many streets, public squares, and summer camps that are named after Palestinian Arab terrorists who have murdered Israelis and Americans.”

For many years, Egypt refused to have relations with Iran because a street in the Iranian capital of Teheran was named after Khaled Islambouli, one of the terrorists who murdered Egyptian leader Anwar Sadat in 1981. The Associated Press, quoting Iran’s Islamic Republic News Service, reported on January 6, 2004, that a majority of the members of the Teheran City Council voted to rename it “Intifada Street.” ZOA president Klein said the choice of the name, which was evidently approved by the Egyptians, “is a reminder that Egypt, which by treaty is supposed to have peaceful and friendly relations with Israel, actively supports Palestinian Arab ‘intifada’ violence against Israel.”

But, the ZOA president added, “the main lesson from this episode is clear—naming streets after terrorists glorifies their terrorism, and pressure from other countries can bring about changes in such street names. By naming streets, public squares, and summer camps after the murderers of Israelis and Americans, the Palestinian Authority is sending a message to Palestinian Arabs that murdering Israelis and Americans is praiseworthy.”

Examples of streets and other public sites in
PA-controlled areas that are named after terrorists:

  • A girls’ summer camp run by the PA Ministry of Youth and Sports, in the city of Kalkilya, is “named after the Shahida [martyr] Wafa Idris … about 100 girls participated [this summer] … [At the closing ceremonies thanks were given including] to UNICEF for its support of the camps.” (Al Ayyam, July 18, 2003) Idris was the first woman suicide bomber. Her attack in Jerusalem on Jan. 27, 2002, murdered one person and wounded over 150.

  • There is also an officially-approved student organization named after Idris at the PA’s Al Quds Open University, in the town of Tubass.

  • A street in the PA-ruled town of Beit Lahiya, and a public square in the PA-ruled city of Jericho, are named after Yiyhe Ayyash. Ayyash, who died in 1996, was named by the State Department as a prime suspect in the August 21, 1995 Jerusalem bus bombing in which Connecticut schoolteacher Joan Davenny was murdered.

  • A street in the PA-ruled town of Al-Bireh is named after Abu Iyad (Salah Khalaf), a PLO leader involved in planning many attacks, including the 1972 Munich Olympics Massacre, in which 12 people were murdered, including a U.S. citizen, David Berger of Cleveland, Ohio.

  • There are PA summer camps named after Jihad Al-Amarin, a Fatah terror leader who died in 2002; suicide bomber Ayyat al-Akhras, who murdered two Israelis in a Jerusalem supermarket bombing on March 29, 2002; and Dalal Mughrabi, who helped carry out the 1978 Tel Aviv Highway Massacre of 38 people (including Gail Rubin, niece of U.S. Senator Abraham Ribicoff).

  • There is also a school in the PA-ruled town of Al-Shuyukh, a kindergarten in the PA-ruled town of Dura, and a Fatah Women’s Young Staff Preparatory Course, all named after Mughrabi.

  • A square in the PA-ruled city of Jenin is named after the Iraqi bomber who murdered four American soldiers in a suicide car bomb attack on March 27, 2003.

  • A soccer tournament in PA-ruled Tulkarm in January 2003 was named after suicide bomber Abd Al-Baset Odeh, who massacred 30 people in a Netanya hotel on Passover eve in 2002, including a 90 year-old U.S. citizen, Mrs. Hannah Rogen.

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