The European Parliament in Brussels held a special session to discuss funding provided by the European Union to the Palestinian Authority, much of which goes to fund monthly salaries paid out by the PA to convicted terrorists or their families, in the event that they are killed while engaged in terrorist acts.
The session opened with the lighting of a memorial candle for Esther Horgan Hy"d, who was murdered two years ago by an Arab near her home in Samaria when she went out for her daily jog near her home. Horgan held European citizenship.
Present at the session were Horgan's husband, Binyamin, and his daughters Odelya and Avigail. Samaria Regional Council Head Yossi Dagan also addressed the session, which was also attended by Israel's ambassador to the European Union, Haim Regev. Around ten EU politicians were present.
"My mother taught us something important," Odelya Horgan told those assembled. "There are two forces in the world, fear and love. From my mother I learned to be motivated by love, but unfortunately, not everyone had a mother like mine and not everyone merited to have such an amazing education. Unfortunately, there are those who are motivated by fear, fear of everything they hate. Such people will do anything due to that fear, including murdering others. Don't fund these people - don't motivate them to use violence," she appealed to the EU parliamentarians. "Don't fuel the fear - embrace love instead."
Avigail Horgan added that, "My mother knew how to connect to all kinds of people. She could see the good in each and every person, but she was killed simply because she was a Jew. I will continue to live according to her worldview, loving people and seeing the good in them, but those who have mercy on cruel people end up being cruel to the merciful. If you continue to provide assistance to terrorists, the price to be paid is that people like my mother will continue to be murdered. My mother was murdered with tremendous cruelty and the trauma was so great that I couldn't even cope with a simple task like washing dishes.
"I'm making progress and getting better slowly," she continued, "but it's hard, and I'm so exhausted. Please, do something, anything, so that even just one less person from my country has to go through what we are going through. I beg you to help me and to stop the cycle of killing from continuing."
"We're here today to remember Esther Horgan," Yossi Dagan, Samaria Regional Council Head, said in his own address. "Esther was killed exactly two years ago. Terrorism continues to strike at our families every single day. And it is your money," he stressed, directing his words at the EU politicians and their colleagues, "tax revenues from hundreds of millions of European citizens, that is being used to encourage the murder of Jews in the State of Israel. The Palestinian Authority transfers half a billion shekels per year to imprisoned terrorists. The more people they murder, the higher the salary they receive. The despicable terrorist, Muhammad Kabha, who murdered Esther is receiving a salary of 12 thousand shekels per month, funded by EU tax revenues. This is six times the average salary in the Palestinian Authority. So I ask you: Isn't it worth it for them to murder Jews? Look into the eyes of these orphans standing here and promise them that you'll do whatever you can to stop this insanity."
Binyamin, Esther's husband, then addressed those present. "Esther was a professional therapist who loved nature, sports, hiking, and of course her family. Two years ago exactly she went out for a walk and never returned. They told us that her body had been found - it was Yossi here who took on the terrible task of informing us. We were in total shock, and we've been working hard since then just to survive. The Palestinian Authority has a law that says that if you're in an Israeli prison because you murdered a Jew, you get paid a salary by the PA - and that salary is partially funded by the European Union.
"I know that most EU politicians are blindly pro-Palestinian," Horgan continued, "but you have to come and see things for yourselves. There are Palestinians and Israelis who live and work together peacefully. But some of them do the opposite, and unfortunately, that includes the leadership of the Palestinian Authority."
The EU parliamentarians appeared shaken at the information presented before them, specifically that related to the funding of terrorists' salaries. One Dutch MEP, Bert-Jan Ruissen, said, "We're here to pay our respects to the memory of Esther Horgan. She was the victim of a terrible terrorist attack that occurred not far from her own home. We wish to express our solidarity with the Israeli people and we condemn all forms of terrorism in clear terms. We also say here today that Israel has the right to defend herself. As we sit here together with Esther's family, I am shocked to learn that her murderer will receive, during his lifetime, some four million shekels from the Palestinian Authority for committing this awful crime."
"This discussion is incredibly important," added MEP Tomas Zdechovsky of the Czech Republic. "We are commemorating Esther who was killed in a terrorist attack. We must never tolerate terrorism. Terrorism and violence against people such as Esther is ongoing in Israel, and we must never forget, just as we must take action against it."
Greek MEP Anna-Michelle Asimakopoulou added, "Nothing we can say can compensate for your loss. All I can do is promise you that after today, Esther's memory will remain in our hearts and thoughts in the European Parliament. We have been asked to fund school textbooks in the Palestinian Authority, and we replied that we will not do so until all the anti-Semitic content of hatred is removed in its entirety."
"We're here to pay our respects to the memory of Esther Horgan," said Dutch MEP Rob Roos. "Esther was murdered simply because she was a Jew. The European Union is turning a blind eye. How can you expect Israelis to make peace with a society that rewards terrorism?" he asked.
"The Palestinian Authority is giving almost a million Euros to each murderer," another MEP noted. "They are encouraging terrorism and this has to stop, now."