Hamas has named a new human rights award after Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, whom Israel considered the mastermind behind several deadly terror attacks in the late 1980s.

Photo credit: Rahim Khatib, Flash90

Hamas on Thursday launched a new human rights award named after Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, a convicted terrorist who spend eight years in an Israeli prison.

Dr. Nasim Yassin, a member of the board of trustees, said the purpose of the award is to “encourage the culture of public freedom and human rights among researchers, mainly Palestinian.”

Yassin co-founded Hamas in 1987. Israeli authorities considered him to be the mastermind behind several deadly attacks against Israeli soldiers. He was arrested in 1989 and sentenced to life in prison, but was released in 1997 as part of a deal with Jordan. In 2004, he was killed in a targeted Israeli strike.