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December 17, 2015 1:59 pm

Palestinian Education Minister Fumes at Australian Delegation’s ‘Rude Questions’ About PA Practice of Honoring Terrorists

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Bronwyn Bishop, left, quizzes Palestinian Education Minister Sabri Saidam (right), as Christopher Pyne (center) listens during a meeting in Ramallah. Photo: Tim Wilson's Twitter feed.

Bronwyn Bishop, left, quizzes Palestinian Education Minister Sabri Saidam (right), as Christopher Pyne (center) listens during a meeting in Ramallah. Photo: Tim Wilson’s Twitter feed.

An Australian-British delegation visiting Ramallah on Sunday was harshly criticized by a Palestinian Authority official for asking “rude and blunt questions,” the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) reported on Thursday.

Prior to meeting with PA Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah and Education Minister Sabri Saidam, the group — headed by Australian Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science Christopher Pyne and including former speaker of the Australian Parliament Bronwyn Bishop, Australian Labor MP Tim Watts, Australian Human Rights Commissioner Tim Wilson and British MPs – had been in Jerusalem for a two-day annual Australia-UK-Israel leadership dialogue.

Following the Ramallah meeting, Saidam blasted the visiting dignitaries for repeatedly asking questions about Palestinians naming schools and other institutions after people who had killed Israeli civilians.

“I said that one man’s hero is another man’s terrorist,” the PA minister told ABC. “The delegation had false information and twisted facts. So it was clear the delegation was not well educated. Obviously the delegation was under impressions, wrong impressions accumulated after the visit to Israel,” he said. “Coming blindfolded to realities, bypassing the pain of Palestinians in terms of daily happenings is not going to solve the conflict.”

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Wilson acknowledged to ABC that members of the group had, indeed, “quizzed” the PA ministers on “a range of topics.”

Pyne worded it slightly differently. “I didn’t quiz anyone,” he told ABC. “I very diplomatically asked the prime minister and education minister questions which I thought would be useful for understanding the Palestinian attitudes to the peace process.”

However, Pyne added, “Other members of the dialogue were slightly more robust.”

According to ABC, Pyne “appeared to blame the British delegates for the controversy, but the Palestinians are adamant it was the Australians.”

Saidam took a jab at Pyne, telling ABC, “There ha[ve] been a lot of complaints on the Palestinian side that the government of Australia was not that sympathetic [to] the Palestinians. I thought the minister of innovation would come with innovative ideas, but instead he came with a list of complaints.”

Still, he told ABC that “despite the atmosphere, he welcomed the visit because he thought it was important to ‘clarify facts.'”

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  • nate

    How is this article useful at all?
    It doesn’t tell you what questions were asked.

  • Reform School

    Where U covers the A of FACT, TRUTH is Pallywood Victim #1

  • Laura Burkhart

    This is a great article. When the whole world asks more questions in Gaza, the West Bank, and to Mr. Obama, for why he cannot call Islamic terror what it is, radical Islamic terror… then tourists to Israel hear a very one sided perspective, & Israeli Jews, the countries majority, suffer alone, stand alone, with no one to call a spade a spade. Someone must those who head the PA, that their peace is clearly no peace and all, and since the land is clearly in the Abrahamic covenant forever, those who do not want peace, may have to be encouraged to find a more suitable homeland, because, Jews have returned to the land for peace. All other agenda’s must be laid down…even ones religion…in the light of the current recent chaos, and returning even as far back as 1948. The world voted for partition, and Israel must return to those fundamental goals of zionism…and its hope!

  • shneerhere

    “..bypassing the pain of Palestinians..”… like, um, a knife to the throat? Love how the psychotic knifers are suddenly the poor, hurt, perpetual victims. Jews need to hire the Pali PR firms. They are doing a better job.

  • Brian from Oz

    I feel sure the facts he clarified were the Palestinian’s.

  • Cherie

    This is purely political protocol and routine to ask key questions based on current events and if you are innocent, then you would not be crying foul for what have you got to hide!!

  • steven L

    Their brains have gone to smoke long ago. The fumes! What fumes!

  • Dave

    About time they got asked some questions about their mad attitudes. Well done, the Aussies.

  • Dave

    About time they got asked some questions about their mad behaviour. Well done, the Aussies.

  • Gregg Solomon

    And Pyne is trying to “blame” “other members.” In other words because political correctness he feels he has to “apologize.”

    Nonesense.

    What Pyne should have followed up with in that meeting and publically to “bypassing the pain of Palestinians in terms of daily happenings is not going to solve the conflict” But it was you, the Palestinian leaders that rejected the peace settlements of 2005 brokered by George W. Bush and 2000 which was brokered my everybody’s favorite Bill Clinton? And it is you and your colleagues that have stated and tried to destroy Israel and kill the Jews. what do you have to say to rejecting these peace agreements and declaring and fighting wars and terror to destroy Israel and kill Jews? What?”

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