Palestinian rights activists Muna and Mohammed El-Kurd, whose family faces forced displacement from their home in the occupied East Jerusalem neighbourhood of Sheikh Jarrah, have been named in Time magazine’s annual list of the 100 most-influential people in the world.

The twins, aged 23, earlier this year became the faces of a global campaign to halt Israeli efforts to forcibly displace Palestinians from Sheikh Jarrah to make way for Jewish settlers.

Israeli forces detained and questioned the siblings for several hours over their activism in June.


“Through online posts and media appearances, sibling activists Mohammed and Muna El-Kurd provided the world with a window into living under occupation in East Jerusalem this spring – helping to prompt an international shift in rhetoric in regard to Israel and Palestine,” the magazine wrote about the siblings.

In a statement on Twitter on Wednesday, Mohammad El-Kurd said that although being named to the list was a “positive” development, symbolism is not enough to truly support the Palestinian cause.

Time magazine’s Editor-in-Chief Edward Felsenthal said the top-100 list features “extraordinary leaders from around the world working to build a better future” who “in a year of crisis have leaped into the fray”.

Also on the list is Taliban co-founder Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, who was recently named Afghanistan’s acting deputy prime minister after the group took control of the country.

The United Kingdom’s Prince Harry and his wife Meghan, American pop star Britney Spears, and US Olympic gymnast Simone Biles are also on the list.