- The Belgian government, through the Directorate-General for Development Cooperation (DGD, a branch of the Belgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs), provides millions of euros to highly politicized non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that promote anti-Israel narratives, lawfare, and BDS (boycott, divestment, and sanctions) campaigns. Some of these organizations have ties to terrorist groups.
- According to Belgian officials, the Belgian government no longer provides direct funding to Israeli and Palestinian NGOs. However, “recognized Belgian NGOs” provide funding to local Israeli and Palestinian NGOs through “co-financing programmes” co-funded by DGD, with DGD providing up to 85% of the total grant.
Direct Funding to Belgian NGOs Active in the Arab-Israeli Conflict
- Association Belgo-Palestinienne (ABP) is a Belgium-based organization that has received direct Belgian government funding (Fédération Wallonie-Bruxelles) since 2005, including €103,196 in 2017, €100,170 in 2016, and €99,476 in 2015.
- ABP is active in discriminatory BDS campaigns against Israel.
- Pierre Galand, ABP’s director and a former Belgian senator, is also the President of ECCP (a Brussels-based association of NGOs working with the UN Committee on the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People). Galand is the general coordinator of the Russel Tribunal(a court that uses a legal façade to create an image of neutrality and credibility, and to accuse Israel of “apartheid,” “war crimes,” “crimes against humanity,” and “genocide”) and the former head of Oxfam-Belgium (one of the leaders in the demonization campaign against Israel).
Intal Globalize Solidarity vzw
- Intal Globalize Solidarity vzw (intal) is a Belgium-based organization that has received direct Belgian government funding (Région Bruxelloise, Région Flamande, Maribel Social) including €104,547 in 2016, €105,069 in 2015, and €106,075 in 2014.
- Intal calls for “the end of Zionism as the State of Israel’s ideology,” a “right of return for all Palestinian refugees,” and “the end of Israel as a state in which Jews must at all price be the majority and where non-Jewish populations are discriminated against.”
- Intal is active in discriminatory BDS campaigns against Israel.
Indirect Funding to Israeli/Palestinian Political NGOs
- Brussels-based Broederlijk Delen, a Catholic development and peace organization, is a major funder of numerous highly politicized NGOs active in the Arab-Israeli conflict.
- In 2017, DGD provided €3.7 million to Broederlijk Delen, including €242,049 for Broederlijk Delen’s projects in “Israel/Palestine” (see table below).
- Broederlijk Delen’s grantees include the Palestinian NGOs Defense for Children International – Palestine, which has ties to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) terrorist organization, and Women’s Center for Legal Aid and Counseling, whose former field worker Manal Tamimi has employed violent and virulently antisemitic rhetoric and imagery on social media.
- In January 2018, Broederlijk Delen supported the discriminatory UN database of businesses operating across the 1949 Armistice line aimed at bolstering BDS campaigns against Israel.
- On February 7, 2017, Broederlijk Delen was a signatory on a call to “end the European complicity – marking 100 years of injustice against the Palestinian people” (i.e. since the Balfour Declaration). The call “solemnly reaffirm[ed] that in 2017, after 100 years of dispossession, denial and ethnic cleansing, the rights of the Palestinian people must, at last, be respected.” The statement further called for the “the suspension of the EU’s Association Agreement with Israel” and on the international community “to cease all complicity with continued settlement activity and the myriad of ways that Israel violates international law.”
- Supports the “Made in Illegality” project, a settlement boycott campaign based in Belgian and France.
Information on Israeli NGOs for 2017 and 2018 was taken from quarterly reports submitted to the Israeli Registrar of Non-Profits; 2013-2016 from Broederlijk Delen’s annual reports.
|Breaking the Silence||126,862||77,678||157,324
|Parents Circle Families Forum||120,868
|Defense for Children International - Palestine (DCI-P)||€32,900||€30,000||€30,000
- Oxfam-Solidarité is the Belgian branch of Oxfam International, an international NGO that claims to work on poverty-related issues.
- Oxfam Solidarité does not publish financial information, reflecting a lack of transparency and accountability. Funding data in the table below is taken from Oxfam Novib’s (Netherlands) “atlas” website, a database providing access to details on all Oxfam projects.
- According to a database established by the French Federation of Development Cooperation NGOs (ACODEV) and the Flemish Federation of Development Cooperation NGOs, in 2014, Oxfam-Solidarité’s budget for its activities in Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza was €1.1 million (latest available; accessed October 17, 2018).
- In 2017, DGD provided Oxfam Solidarité with €287,938 for a project titled “From emergency food security to durable livelihoods: Building resilience in the occupied Palestinian territory.” DGD does not list the partners on this project.
- Oxfam Solidarité has an ongoing DGD funded program Cash-for-work” implemented in partnership with the Union of Agricultural Works Committee (UAWC). The program aims at supporting the “fishermen in Gaza, who face many obstacles,” including the “limitations of the fishing zones imposed by the Israelis.”
- Oxfam Solidarité’s Palestinian grantees include Health Works Committee (HWC), United Health Works Committee (UHWC) (partners since 1990), and Union of Agricultural Work Committees (UAWC) (partners since 1998). These three organizations all have ties with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), a terrorist organization designated as such by the US, EU, Canada, and Israel.
- Catherine de Bock, Oxfam-Solidarité’s “policy officer for the Middle East,” worked (2014-2015) for the Palestinian organization BADIL, which promotes a so-called Palestinian “right of return,” promotes BDS campaigns against Israel, is active in lawfare attempts to prosecute Israeli military officials in international and European courts, and publishes antisemitic images on its website.
- Referring to two relatives who were killed by the IDF, De Bock wrote on Facebook, “Abu Ali died in the struggle for a free Palestine and so did his nephew Basel two days ago. It is our duty to continue their fight, enduring a better future for the Palestinian people.”
- “Abu Ali” is De Bock’s father in law, Ibrahim Mohammed Alaraj, a PFLP terrorist who was killed in 2002.
- “His nephew Basel” is Basel al-A’araj, killed in a firefight. He was arrested by the Palestinian Authority in April 2016 “for planning attacks against Israelis and imprisoned for six months.” According to Israeli officials, he “was allegedly part of a terrorist cell planning to carry out attacks on Israeli targets,” and he “Al-A’araj directed the cell and was responsible for purchasing the weaponry.”
- In 2003, Oxfam Belgium produced a poster of an “Israeli orange” dripping with blood to promote anti-Israel boycotts. The caption read: “Israeli fruits have a bitter taste…reject the occupation of Palestine, don’t buy Israeli fruits and vegetables.” Following protest initiated by NGO Monitor over the antisemitic “blood libel” overtones, Oxfam withdrew the campaign.
- Oxfam-Solidarité stated that “Recognition by Israel of ethnic cleansing of 1948 would be a positive first step to solve a problem 60 years old and for the recognition of the right of return of refugees.”
|Health Work Committees (HWC)||€123,388||€137,850||€367,850
|Union of Agricultural Work Committees (UAWC)||€25,848||€260,154||
|Palestinian Medical Relief Services (PMRS)||€87,600||€45,462||€214,338||
|Union of Health Workers Committee||€63,034||€35,549||€157,227||
Third World Health Aid/Médecine pour le Tiers Monde/Geneeskunde voor de Derde Wereld (TWHA/M3M/G3W)
- Third World Health Aid is a Belgium-based organization that claims to work on issues related to health rights.
- In 2014-2017, DGD granted M3M €834,195 for its programs in Jerusalem, the West Bank, and Gaza.
- TWHA’s grantees include United Health Works Committee, Health Works Committee (“partners since the early 1990’s”), and the Bisan Center for Research and Development. All three of these NGOs have ties to the PFLP terrorist organization.
- UHWC is a PFLP-affiliated health committee active in Gaza.
- HWC has been referred to as a “sister organization” of the UHWC.
- Omitting his conviction by an Israeli court of being a PFLP member, THWA claimed that the detention of its “colleague” David Ghoul, the coordinator of the youth program of HWC, “demonstrates that his work bothers, that working with young people lacking future and hope to give back them confidence disturbs the Israeli government.”
- The Israeli High Court of Justice decision on his matter [19274-07-15] states, “The defendant decided to join the organization [PFLP]… Due to the closure of the [Nidal] center, the organization began to operate covertly through the ‘Health union committees – Jerusalem’…On 09/06/15 the Defense Minister announced that the association is an unlawful association…”
- HWC’s Youth Development Program, “A community, cultural, and social development program that provide services to Jerusalemite youth through ‘Nidal Center’ in the old city of Jerusalem,” was closed by Israeli authorities from 2009 to 2012 due to its ties to the PFLP.
- Bisan Center for Research and Development has reported ties to the PFLP.
- In a 2013 publication, bearing the Belgium Development Cooperation logo, TWHA stated: “One of the most flagrant examples of how a sovereign state has been undermined is the decades-long occupation and colonization of Palestine, which began in 1948 when Palestinians were driven en masse from their villages in what is now Israel” (emphasis added).
- TWHA supports the “Made in Illegality” project, a settlement boycott campaign based in Belgium and France, and promotes the suspension of the EU-Israel Association Agreement.
- The organization is a signatory to a BDS Movement statement urging a Belgian firm (Jan De Nul Group) to abandon an Israeli port building project. It also supports an arms embargo against Israel, stating, “our country cannot support the occupation of Palestine, by illegal colonists, with sales or purchases of arms with Israel.”
- In 2017, Solidarité Socialiste’s budget for activities in Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza was €240,122.
- In 2016, Solidarité Socialiste received €385,525 from DGD for projects in the West Bank.
- Solidarité Socialiste partners with and funds MA’AN Development Center, Bisan Center for Research and Development (Bisan), and the Popular Art Center (PAC), but does not detail amounts provided to each of the organizations.
- Solidarité Socialiste supports the “Made in Illegality” campaign, a settlement boycott campaign based in Belgium and France, and promotes the suspension of the EU-Israel Association Agreement.
- Solidarité Socialiste accuses Israel of “systematically [seeking] to exercise control over Palestine, sporadically occupying its territories and regulating the circulation of its residents and goods.” Solidarité Socialiste describes the Palestinian economy as “an economy of occupation” and states that “the wall had the effect to paralyze the economy of the Palestinian territories.”
Indirect Funding to Israeli and Palestinian NGOs via International Organizations
- Norwegian Refugee Council engages in lawfare and international delegitimization campaigns against Israel.
- One of NRC’s principle projects in Israel, “Information, counseling, and legal assistance (ICLA),” exploits judicial frameworks to manipulate Israeli policy, bypassing democratic frameworks.
- ICLA’s interventions in Israeli courts and other venues “beneficiary targets” include: “3628 opened and continuing cases for legal assistance in the West Bank (West Bank 612 new and 3016 continuing), 40 advocacy briefings given on specific HLP and residency issues (verbal or written), 10 of instances information is submitted to other UN mechanisms, and 75 public interest cases challenging unjust HLP issues.”
- A lawyer affiliated with the NRC program stated that the objective of these cases are an attempt to “try every possible legal measure to disrupt the Israeli judicial system…as many cases as possible are registered and that as many cases as possible are appealed to increase the workload of the courts and the Supreme Court to such an extent that there will be a blockage” (emphasis added).
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