Ahmed Jibril, the Secretary General of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine – General Command, in Damasacus, Jan. 23, 2008. (AP Photo Bassem Tellawi)
Ahmed Jibril

Mahmoud Abbas prays for God to cover Ahmed Jibril with “vast mercy.”

By United With Israel Staff

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas offered condolences to the family of arch-terrorist Ahmed Jibril and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command terror group. Jibril masterminded some of the deadliest terror attacks against Israel in the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s.

In a statement issued by Abbas’s office and published in the PA-run Wafa News, Abbas “provided his condolences to Badr Jibril, the son of the deceased, praying to God Almighty, to cover him with his vast mercy, that [Jibril] dwell in his vast gardens, and grant his family and relatives patience and solace,” in a telephone call.

Wafa reported that Abbas also phoned his condolences to Jibril’s replacement as PFLP-GC leader, Talal Naji.

The 83-year-old Jibril, who had been ailing for some time, died in a Damascus hospital on Wednesday.

Jibril founded the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine in the 1950s, then broke from the group over ideological disagreements. He founded the breakaway Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command in 1968. Both are designated as terror organizations by the U.S. State Department. He vehemently opposed the Oslo accords.

Over a period of decades, Jibril organized numerous hijackings and bombings. His deadliest terror attacks included 1970 bombing of a Swissair flight (killing all 47 passengers and crew), the 1970 attack on an Israeli school bus near Moshav Avivim (killing 12, mostly children), the Kiryat Shemona massacre of 1974 when terrorists attacked an Israeli school (18 killed, half of whom were students) and the 1987 “Night of the Hang Gliders” when terrorists attacked an IDF base (six soldiers killed).

In 1985, Jibril pulled off what became known as “The Jibril Deal,” swapping three captured IDF soldiers for 1,150 security prisoners, many of whom had blood on their hands. Although Israel had arranged prisoner swaps with other Arab countries, this was its first exchange with a terror group. The most prominent of the released Palestinians was Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, who went on to become the founder and spiritual leader of Hamas.

A staunch ally of Syrian President Bashar Assad, Jibril’s men supported Syrian forces besieging the Yarmouk refugee camp in 2011. Two hundred Palestinian refugees starved to death in that siege.

Other senior PA officials mourning Jibril’s death included the PA’s Civilian Affairs Minister Hussein al-Sheikh.

“Our deepest condolences to our comrades in the General Command and to the Palestinian people on the death of the Palestinian leader Ahmed Jibril,” al-Sheikh tweeted.

A number of terrorists associated with Ahmed Jibril have been feted as “freedom fighters” in recent years by the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions campaign. Most prominent among them are Leilah Khaled and Rasmea Odeh.