May 31, 2014 03:03 AM EDT
Jewish Groups Accuse SFSU for Funding Anti-Israel Trips
The San Francisco State University (SFSU) is being accused of misusing taxpayers' money for organising meetings with two convicted terrorists.
SFSU professors Rabab Abdulhadi and Joanne Barker received more than $7,000 for a January trip to Jordan and West Bank.
During the trip, professors met with terrorist Leila Khaled - who is a kidnapper and a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP). The organisation is responsible for several terrorist attacks and deaths of more than 20 U.S. citizens.
They also met with Sheikh Raed Salah, who has been convicted of financing Hamas and jailed for stirring violence.
Both, Hamas and PFLP, have been labelled as terrorist groups by the U.S. State Department.
Jewish advocacy groups including the AMCHA Initiative and the Simon Wiesenthal Center have accused Abdulhadi for obtaining funding on false pretenses and have called for an investigation into the "egregious misuse of university and taxpayer funds."
"Evidence demonstrates that Abdulhadi always intended to use the university-funded trip to build relationships with anti-Israel political activists to promote anti-Semitic academic, cultural, and economic boycotts of Israel and the meetings were set before Abdulhadi requested university approval," the Jewish groups wrote in a recent letter to SFSU administrators, Washington Times reports.
Abdulhadi, earlier, claimed that the intention of the trip was to attend an academic conference at the American University in Lebanon. However, Abdulhadi's invite was rescinded from the conference weeks before her arrival.
The Jewish advocacy groups allege that Abdulhadi's trip's true purpose was to foster relations with anti-Israel political activists and encourage anti-Semitic academic, cultural and economic ban on Israel.
"We believe that there was some fraud going on in order to get the money, approval, insurance, she essentially defrauded the state and the taxpayers of California," said Tammi Rossman-Benjamin, the AMCHA Initiative's co-founder.
Abdulhadi, an ethnic studies professor, has already attracted criticism at SFSU, organizing anti-Israel events and for serving as the faculty adviser to an SFSU student, who was expelled from the school for posting a picture of him holding a knife with a caption that read, "I want to stab an Israeli soldier."
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