February 15, 2016 Special Dispatch No. 6307

Al-Quds University In Jerusalem Commemorates Terrorist In Guise Of Promoting Culture And Education

February 15, 2016
Palestine | Special Dispatch No. 6307

On Saturday, February 13, 2016, Al-Quds University in Jerusalem held a "cultural event" in memory of Baha 'Alyan, who, together with Bilal Ghanem, carried out an October 13, 2015 shooting and stabbing attack on a Jerusalem bus in which three people were killed and four wounded. The event was held under the auspices of the Palestinian Authority's "High Commission for Youth and Sports," a branch of the PLO in charge of youth and sports activities in the PA territories and the Palestinian diaspora.[1] As part of the event 2,500 students, sitting side by side and each reading a book, formed a human chain "of readers and writers" under the slogan "The Baha Al-Shuhada Chain" (meaning "the Light of the Martyrs chain").

A similar event in 'Alyan's memory was held some two weeks ago at the Hebron university, where he had studied.[2]

The following are details about the Al-Quds event and photos from it.

Poster advertising the event (

Students at the event form a human chain of "readers and writers" (, February 13, 2016)

The initiator of the activity, 'Azzam Ahmad Anjas, said that Baha 'Alyan was known as "the learned martyr," and that the event aimed to realize an idea he had voiced several years ago, to form a chain of readers along the walls of Jerusalem. Anjas added that, in preparation for the event, a group of students had launched a designated Facebook page and a special hashtag to advertise the initiative and recruit participants. He also mentioned that the activity will continue in other universities in the PA territories. [3]   

Poster on the event's Facebook page

No condemnation of the deadly attack perpetrated by Baha 'Alyan was heard at the ceremony. Rather, speakers at the event linked the attack with 'Alyan's "cultural legacy" of promoting education and free expression. His father, attorney Muhammad 'Alyan, who attended the event, said that "without education the people would not have been able to confront the occupation," and added: "Baha (meaning 'light') is an idea, and the idea will never die. Today I have over 1,000 lights - students who are continuing in his footsteps." He said further, "The occupation has turned the entire Palestinian people into seekers of martyrdom." Muhammad Al-Azraq, a student of communications at the Al-Quds university, said that 'Alyan had proved that "defending the homeland required education."

Baha's father, attorney Muhammad 'Alyan, with a portrait of his son drawn during the event 

The event ended with participants writing messages in honor of Baha and other "martyrs," which were collected in a special box with the aim of eventually compiling them into a book. Many of the participants at the event wore shirts bearing Baha's portrait. [4]

Box for collecting the messages in honor of Baha and other martyrs (, February 13, 2016)

Displayed at the event: Baha's portrait alongside a portrait of Muhannad Al-Halabi, who carried out a stabbing attack on October 13, 2015



[1], February 14, 2016.

[2], February 1, 2016.

[3], February 11, 13, 2016.

[4], February 13, 2016.

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