Palestinian women's rights activist accused of enabling sexual harassment


Published: 2017-12-19 15:56

Last Updated: 2017-12-19 15:56

Linda Sarsour. (Wikimedia Commons)
Linda Sarsour. (Wikimedia Commons)
Roya News Source

Linda Sarsour, a Palestinian activist and former executive director of the Arab American Association of New York, has been accused of covering up the sexual assault of a woman who worked at the office, according to the victim and several other sources.

Asmi Fathelbab, 37, worked for Sarsour for almost a year, according to the Daily Caller (tDC).

Fathelbad told tDC that she made multiple sexual assault claims to Sarsour against a man living in the same building of the Arab American Association offices.

Sarsour reportedly dismissed the allegations by body-shaming Asmi, and went on to defend the abuser
saying he is a "good Muslim" and "always at the Mosque."

“He would sneak up on me during times when no one was around, he would touch me, you could hear me scream at the top of my lungs."

"I ran the youth program in the building and I couldn’t scream because I didn’t want to scare the child in front of me. It left me shaking.” Fathelbab explained to tDC.

Fathelbab mentioned the threat made to her by Sarsour, claiming she would cause legal and professional damage if she would go public with the accusations.

"She had me fired from other jobs when she found out where I worked. She has kept me from obtaining any sort of steady employment for almost a decade.”

Sarsour is known for her feminist views and helping launch the Women's March in Washington back in January, to advocate legislation and policies regarding human rights and other issues.

The story went viral within hours, spurred on by a tweet and retweet from Donald Trump Jr., whose Twitter account has more than 2 million followers.

However, Sarsour has since denied the accusations, telling Buzzfeed that none of Fathelbab’s claims to the Daily Caller matched the account she brought to Sarsour nearly nine years ago.

“The exact words were, ‘He makes me feel uncomfortable,’” Sarsour said. “There was nothing about touching or groping. There’s no evidence, no email she can pull out where she ever gave those claims to us,” she said.

As for the claims about body-shaming, Sarsour said, that “never, ever” happened.

“This is character assassination,” she said. “This is where we have to draw the line. I have two daughters. This is not the type of behavior I engage in,” she told Buzzfeed.