An article on Al Forqan newspaper distributed in Canada and the United States described a terrorist attack against a synagogue in Jerusalem as a “qualitative attack” carried out by “two heroes.” Six were killed in the attack: five worshippers and a policeman.

The Palestinian Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) took responsibility for the attack.

Al Forqan is a Canadian Arabic newspaper based in Windsor, Ontario. According to its website, “Al Forqan is a daily online newspaper and a monthly printed newspaper issued by the Al Forqan Media Foundation, Editor and Managing Director Mohamad Hisham Khalifeh, and a group of administrators and highly qualified individuals.”

Al Forqan states:

An independent, political, and cultural newspaper, it does not follow any political party yet pursues a policy of truth and justice and includes sections on education, culture, sports, and society. Al Forqan is a contemporary newspaper, which deals with life affairs and includes topics of interest to all segments of society (Arab and Canadian writers, elite, doctors, professors, and professionals).

Distribution: The administrators purposely made the distribution of the newspaper free to ensure that it reaches all segments of society. The newspaper consists of 16 pages (eight in color), five of which in English and the other 11 in Arabic, with over 10,000 copies distributed each month in the Windsor, London, and Michigan areas (including all shops, mosques, and residential complexes).

The opinions expressed in the articles published on this website are strictly those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Al Forqan Newspaper, its publishers or employees.

In Issue 23, November – December 2014, Al Forqan published an unsigned article titled “The incidents in Al-Quds – is this the spark of a looming intifada?” Here is an excerpt from the article (originally in Arabic):

In light of all this pressure by the occupation, a number of young [Palestinian] Jerusalemites carried out independent vehicular attacks and stabbing operations that caused the death and injury of a number of settlers and soldiers of the occupation. Yehuda Glick, the engineer of storming the Al-Aqsa [mosque], did not escape the bullets of the [Palestinian] Jerusalemites when he was the target of an assassination attempt. He was seriously injured but was saved from death. [The most important operation] was the qualitative attack carried out by two heroes in the Jewish synagogue in which five [six] Zionists were killed, in a natural response to the repeated crimes perpetrated by the Zionist entity against Al-Aqsa Mosque and the residents of Palestine and [the city of] Al-Quds [Jerusalem].

Victims of Har Nof attack
An Israeli Druze policeman (left) was killed in Har Nof defending the five rabbis killed while praying in their synagogue on November 18, 2014. One rabbi was originally from Canada, one from the UK, and three from the United States.

“The qualitative attack” mentioned in Al Forqan’s article refers to the terrorist attack that took place on November 18, 2014, in the Kehilat Bnei Torah in the Har Nof neighborhood in Jerusalem. Two terrorists armed with a handgun and cleavers stormed the synagogue, attacking the Jewish worshippers during the morning prayer. A police officer and five Jewish worshippers were killed in the attack.

Arab cartoon praising the murder of five worshippers at prayer in Har Nof
An Arab cartoon praising the murder of five worshippers at prayer in Har Nof, Jerusalem in 2014.

Claiming “Credit”

The Palestinian Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) officially claimed responsibility for the attack. The following are excerpts from PFLP’s statement on November 15, 2015:

…the first anniversary of the martyrdom in the path of Allah of our comrades [members of PFLP], the fighters, residents of steadfast community of Jabal Al-Mukaber in [the city of] occupied Al-Quds, that ignites the intifadas, members of the Martyr Abu Ali Mustafa Brigades [military/terror wing of PFLP], perpetrators of the heroic Dir Yassin Operation in the Jewish synagogue in the occupied [city of] Al-Quds:

PFLP's statement

The martyr in the path of Allah, the fighter, the comrade [member of PFLP], the hero, Uday Abed Abu Jamal.

The martyr in the path of Allah, the fighter, the comrade [member of PFLP], the hero, Ghassan Mohammad Abu Jamal.


Lt. Col. (ret.) Jonathan D. Halevi is a senior researcher of the Middle East and radical Islam at the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs. He is a co-founder of the Orient Research Group Ltd.