The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), an EU-designated terror group and longtime ally of Hamas in Gaza, participated in the atrocities of October 7. In fact, on its website and Telegram, the PFLP proudly shared videos, images, and text celebrating the massacre and the attacks against “occupation army troops and the herds of their settlers” in southern Israel.
Reportedly, the PFLP was also involved in illegally holding Israeli hostages brought back to Gaza.
What Is the PFLP?
Founded by George Habash in 1967, the PFLP is a Palestinian, secular, Marxist-Leninist terror group, originally supported by the Soviet Union and China.
Since its inception, the terror group has been involved in suicide bombings, shootings, and assassinations, among other attacks targeting civilians. The group was well-known for hijacking commercial airlines in the 1960s and 1970s, involving thousands of civilians in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, and is responsible for countless deaths and injuries.
Terror attacks committed by the PFLP include: In 1976, its members joined with the Baader–Meinhof Gang (a West German terror group) to hijack an Air France Tel Aviv-bound flight, diverting it in Entebbe, Uganda. In 2001, the PFLP assassinated Israeli Minister of Tourism Rehavam Ze’evi. In 2011, PFLP members took credit for the home invasion and murder of the Fogel family, including a baby and two young children. The terrorist group was also responsible for the 2014 massacre at a synagogue in Jerusalem’s Har Nof neighborhood, murdering four worshipers and an Israeli Druze police officer. In August 2019, a PFLP terror cell carried out a bombing against Israeli civilians, murdering 17-year-old Rina Shnerb, and injuring her father and brother.
The PFLP also operates an informal network of NGOs, which are funded and supported by European taxpayer funds1 under the facades of human rights, economic development, and other frameworks. In 2021, the Israeli Ministry of Defense designated seven of these PFLP-affiliated NGOs as “terror organizations,” citing the diversion of humanitarian funds from European donors to the PFLP and the recruitment of members for the terror group.
PFLP Statements Taking Credit for Atrocities2
- On October 7, 2023, the PFLP posted several pictures on its official telegram channel, Abu Ali Mustafa Brigades. They show PFLP terrorists attacking near Gaza. It also issued the following statement, “Cells of the martyr Abu Ali Mustafa Brigades stormed several [military] points in the Gaza envelope and have inflicted verified losses in the Zionist ranks. The cells have returned safely to their bases, and other cells are operating in the field now to inflict more losses in the ranks of the occupation army troops and the herds of their settlers.”
- On October 7, 2023, PFLP’s “military wing”, Abu Ali Mustafa Brigades, issued a statement: “‘The Al-Aqsa flood’ campaign is a campaign of the Palestinian people in all its resistance forces. In light of the heroic sights made possible by the heroes of the resistance inside the occupied lands…we in the Abu Ali Mustafa Brigades emphasize the following:…We announce a state of maximum mobilization within the ranks of our fighters, and we work on the field on the ground (sic) in several axes side by side the comrades of blood and arms. We stand with our brothers in the [Izz ad-Din] Al-Qassam Brigades and with all the resistance forces, and fight alongside them this campaign which will be noted in history. We call upon all resistance forces inside and outside of Palestine to take their positions in the trenches of confrontation which stretch now throughout all the area. Glory to the martyrs and victory to the resistance…”
- On October 7, 2023, the PFLP posted the following statement: “On this day, the nature of the conflict and the dignity of the Arab nation are regained….PFLP calls the sons of our heroic people across Palestine to actively participate in the ‘Al-Aqsa flood’ campaign, each from his location and with whatever means he possesses, in order to bring an onslaught on the enemy’s army and its settlers…and to hail attacks on them in every inch of the land of Palestine. The Front emphasized its call to all who carries arms, and especially the sons of the [PA] security forces to join in the campaign of the Palestinian people against its enemy and to position themselves in the natural place of every free Palestinian that fights to end the occupation…”
- On October 9, 2023, the PFLP posted a picture of several PFLP terrorists and the following statement, “Since the beginning of the #Al-Aqsa_flood campaign the comrades in the cyber force have engaged in launching electronic attacks, targeting the infrastructure inside the entity [i.e. Israel], including the control systems of electricity, water, road, and UAV development and manufacturing companies. Our fighters and comrades are behind the enemy everywhere.”
- Based on our research and documentation received from the British government, NGO Monitor believes UK taxpayer funds also are being transmitted to PFLP-linked entities. We are currently involved in a Freedom of Information lawsuit against the FCDO to confirm this information.
- all translations from the original Arabic by NGO Monitor