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“She’s fighting for human rights”: Kuya Kim backs daughter on pro-Palestine stance

by Deanna Macaranas

FILIPINO TV host Kim Atienza defended his eldest daughter Eliana after she got involved in pro-Palestine protests at the University of Pennsylvania (UPenn).  

Due to her participation, Eliana and five other students were reportedly suspended by the university. 

In an interview with ABS-CBN, Atienza said that their family supports Eliana’s advocacies. He clarified that her actions did not mean that she’s pro-Hamas but rather anti-genocide. 

“Eliana has always been vocal about what she believes in. In this instance, she’s part of the organization that is anti-genocide and anti-war,” Atienza said.  

He added that his daughter’s remarks were taken out of context after her interview with US media sites had gone viral. 

As a result, some people slammed their family’s extravagant lifestyle and her assertions that she “has been kicked out of her university dorm” and was technically “homeless.” 

“She was technically homeless because she was removed from her dorm. Unfortunately, that message was taken out of context. She never said she was poor,” Atienza said.  

Due to Eliana’s participation in the protest, the 19-year-old student was banned from entering her dorm and the campus. Atienza later clarified that she was banned only from entering the premises and was not expelled from the university. 

Although Eliana was given academic sanctions, she will return for the next semester as they are currently on a summer break. 

Eliana had attempted to make an appeal to university administrators, asking the school to sever all financial links to Israel in light of its ongoing military operations in Gaza. 

She also signed an endorsement letter saying, “Palestinians who are fighting to liberate their lands from the Israeli occupation.”



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