Several European governments fund NGOs that often justify attacks against Israeli civilians and maintain ties to terrorists, according to a report by the research institute NGO Monitor.
The report, "White Washing 'Resistance' – Human Rights Funding to Organizations Blurring the Line Between Violence and Nonviolence," outlines several groups with links to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), a Marxist-Leninist terrorist organization designated by the EU and other Western states. According to the report's findings, many of these NGOs fail to clearly distinguish between the legitimacy of non-violent and violent activity, and frequently promote the concept of "resistance" – a term Palestinians often exploit in reference to terrorist attacks targeting Israel.
The report describes how the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR), for example, often justifies attacks against Israelis as a "legitimate right to resist the occupation."
PFLP operatives founded some of the listed NGOs directly, while other groups include staff members who were convicted of terrorism-related charges by Israeli courts. These so-called human rights organizations are at the forefront for the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement, while prominent individuals within some of the NGOs are known to promote violence and anti-Semitism.
"Donors to the PFLP-linked NGOs include the EU, the governments of Sweden, Denmark, Spain, Norway, Ireland, UK, the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, France, and Switzerland, and the United Nations," the report's authors outline.
Using EU funds, the Spanish NGO Novact hosted a conference in February on preventing violent extremism, inviting two Palestinians with a history of extremist views and associations, Manal Tamimi and Munther Amira. After the two entered the country, Spanish authorities arrested Tamimi and Amira, members of the Popular Struggle Coordination Committee (PSCC), for suspected terrorist related activity.
The NGO Monitor report lists other European-funded groups with ties to the PFLP, such as the Addameer association and Al-Haq. For example, Addameer's vice chairwoman - Khalida Jarrar - was indicted for being a PFLP member and for calling on terrorists to kidnap Israeli soldiers.
"The examples presented in this report are symptomatic of an overall lack of accountability and scrutiny in government funding to NGOs that are politically active in the Arab-Israeli conflict. This results in financial backing for groups that legitimize violence, in sharp contradistinction to the government funders that are otherwise committed to facilitating a negotiated "two-state" vision," write the report's authors before providing recommendations.
The report was released days before a diplomatic quarrel intensified between Israel and Germany, fuelled by Germany's support for anti-Israel NGOs.
Refusing to adhere to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's request, German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel met with representatives from B'tselem and Breaking the Silence – far-Left groups devoted to targeting the Israel Defence Forces (IDF). Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responded by cancelling a meeting with Gabriel scheduled for April 25.
"In his actions, Prime Minister Netanyahu is seeking to put this irresponsible NGO funding by Europe on the agenda, and to trigger long-overdue changes," NGO Monitor president Gerald Steinberg told Jewish News Service, adding that European and German state funds allow "fringe groups like Breaking the Silence to travel the world attacking the IDF."