The New Zealand Government must immediately designate Hamas a terrorist organisation to protect Jews in New Zealand and worldwide from a grave threat, the Holocaust Centre of New Zealand says.
Hamas, in its 1988 founding charter specifically directs the killing of Jews. It repeats conspiracy theories about Jews including that they “were behind World War II, through which they made huge financial gains by trading in armaments…”
It explicitly references age-old antisemitic stereotypes and conspiratorial texts such as the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, and accuses Jews of forming “…secret societies, such as Freemasons, Rotary Clubs, the Lions and others … for the purpose of sabotaging societies and achieving Zionist interests”.
Whilst Hamas released “A Document of General Principles & Policies” in 2017 which toned down some of the more openly anti-Jewish rhetoric, it has never repealed its charter.
Holocaust Centre of New Zealand chair Deborah Hart says: “The barbaric recent events in Israel by Hamas in targeting and murdering civilians – men, women and children, and taking hostages, including babies and children, shows Hamas has not moderated at all.
“The ongoing harassment of Jewish communities outside Israel, at the direction of Hamas, demonstrates that their antisemitic charter remains in practice despite the much-publicised 2017 declaration.”
The mission of the Holocaust Centre of New Zealand is to inspire and empower action against antisemitism, discrimination, and apathy by remembering, educating, and bearing witness to the Holocaust.
“We have once again witnessed a hate-filled pogrom with the largest number of Jews killed in any one day since the Holocaust,” Deborah Hart says.
“Whilst New Zealand has designated the Hamas military wing as a terrorist organisation, through its charter, Hamas itself makes no such distinction.
“The Holocaust Centre calls on the Government to join others including the United Kingdom, Australia and the United States to cease aiding hate and to recognise Hamas, in its entirety as a terrorist organisation. Such a designation would make the Jewish community in New Zealand safer by criminalising support for Hamas.”
The Holocaust Centre is devastated by the events of 7 October when Hamas murdered over 1,300 innocent Israeli men, women and children, Deborah Hart says.
“We condemn without reservation its heinous acts of terror including rape and the taking hostage of innocent civilians. And we stand with compassion for all those innocent casualties of the war initiated by Hamas,” Deborah Hart says.