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Action on Armed Violence (AOAV)

Profile

Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Websitehttps://aoav.org.uk/
Founded2007 as the Landmine Action Charitable Trust, but remained largely inactive until 2012.
In their own words “To carry out research, advocacy and fieldwork, in order to reduce the incidence and impact of global armed violence.”

Funding

Activities

  • Headquartered in London; with offices in Burundi, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Western Sahara.
  • Seeks “to remove the threat of weapons, monitor the impact of explosive weapons around the world and investigate what causes armed violence – from guns to suicide bombings.”

Political Advocacy

  • Founded the International Network on Explosive Weapons (INEW), together with Human Rights Watch, IKV Pax Christi, Norwegian People’s Aid, Oxfam International, Save the Children UK, and others. While INEW seeks “to prevent human suffering from the use of explosive weapons in populated areas,” it engages in highly biased and politicized activities and promotes a distorted view of the Arab-Israeli conflict.
  • Published a December 2014 report, “Under Fire: Israel’s artillery policies scrutinised,” funded by the Norwegian government, which claims that “the changes to military practice made by the IDF over the last decade to regulate their use of heavy explosive weapons have not led to significant and effective civilian protection on the ground” and that “Public rhetoric from IDF officials consistently emphasizes efforts to reduce civilian casualties, but evidence of recent operations show these efforts are not reflected on the ground.”
    • The report fails to provide the proper context for the 2014 Gaza war, including the Hamas abduction and murder of three Israeli teenagers, the incessant rocket and mortar fire from Gaza, and terror tunnels leading from Gaza into Israeli territory intended to launch attacks on Israeli civilians and security personnel.
    • Cites highly biased and politicized NGOs and officials, including: +972 Magazine, Human Rights Watch, B’Tselem, Adalah, Amnesty International, Breaking the Silence, Michael Sfard, Mads Gilbert, PAX, Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR), as well as the discredited Goldstone Report.
    • The artillery section of the report relies heavily on discredited HRW publications, which are filled with methodological failures and factual inaccuracies.
    • Refers to white phosphorus, a conventional and legal materiel used by the Israeli army as a smokescreen during the 2009 Gaza war, as “particularly harmful weaponry” and “particularly abhorrent or indiscriminate weaponry.” Much of this false rhetoric against white phosphorus originated with Human Rights Watch.
    • Mentions in passing the alleged use of flechette shells and depleted uranium, though there is no evidence presented for these inflammatory claims.
    • Criticizes the “roof-knocking” technique because it “might be confusing, or might even be a form of psychological warfare” and because they are “still bombs.”  However, the report goes on to criticize the fact that shellings are not preceded by similar warnings.
    • In the accompanying infographic, AOAV shows Gazan deaths (with separate listing for children), psychological harm to children, injuries, and damages. For Israel, they show only the number of deaths. They do not note the death of a child in Israel, psychological harm to hundreds of thousands of Israeli children, nor any other injuries and damages.
  • AOAV data for a publication on male Gaza civilian deaths during 2014 was gathered from Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) weekly updates. PCHR is a political organization without credible methodologies for analysis of casualty claims. PCHR uses distorted legal and factual claims, including on casualties, to advance Palestinian propaganda and generate global outrage against Israel.

Funding (partial list, based on 2013 and 2012 financial statements)

Donor2013 (£)2012 (£)
Norway2,140,4591,979,379
Australia43,585----
Norwegian People's Aid----7,977
Austria21,39812,600
United Nations Office for Project Services (contract)1,809,2341,427,597

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