Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders)


FoundedParis in 1971, with branches worldwide.
In their own words“[A]n international, independent, medical humanitarian organization” that “deliver[s] emergency aid to people affected by armed conflict, epidemics, natural disasters and exclusion from healthcare.”


  • In 2022, total income was €2.3 billion; total expenses were €2.2 billion, of which €20.3 million was spent on programs in Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza.
  • Donors include Switzerland, Japan, Canada, and the United Nations. (See table below for further funding information.)
  • According to MSF, “Since 2016, we refuse to take funds from the European Union, its Member States and Norway, in opposition to their damaging deterrence policies on migration and their intensifying attempts to push people away from European shores.”


  • MSF claims to provide “emergency aid to people affected by armed conflict, epidemics, natural disasters and exclusion from healthcare… irrespective of race, religion, gender or political affiliation.”
  • According to MSF’s Charter, volunteers “observe[] neutrality and impartiality” and “undertake to respect their professional code of ethics and to maintain complete independence from all political, economic and religious powers.”
  • In practice, however, MSF consistently abuses its status as a humanitarian organization to launch venomous anti-Israel political campaigns.

Political Advocacy

  • MSF rhetoric includes accusing Israel of “collective punishment,” “indiscriminate bombings,” and “wholesale massacres.”
  • MSF has provided funding to the Abdel Shafi Community Health Association (ACHA), formerly known as the Red Crescent Society for the Gaza Strip (RCS4GS). ACHA was founded and is directed by senior members of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP). Other employees have demonstrated support for Palestinian terror groups and their actions. On multiple occasions, ACHA facilities were used by the PFLP to hold events.
  • In October 2023, MSF tweeted, “We are horrified by the recent Israeli bombing of Ahli Arab Hospital in #Gaza City, which was treating patients and hosting displaced Gazans. Hundreds of people have reportedly been killed. This is a massacre. It is absolutely unacceptable…” MSF ignored the videos, images, and intelligence materials demonstrating that an Islamic Jihad rocket had “misfired” (i.e. detonated in Gaza instead of Israel) and hit the hospital parking lot.
  • MSF also repeatedly denied that Hamas was present in Gaza hospitals, claiming that “we have seen no evidence that the hospital buildings or the compounds are being used by Hamas as a military base.” 
  • In June 2021, MSF posted an article titled “The Disease of Settler Colonialism and Apartheid.” According to the article, “MSF will continue treating the wounds of this violence, but the cure for Palestinian suffering will only come with the end of settler colonialism and apartheid…We are treating the consequences of settler colonialism and apartheid, for which we have no medical cure.”
  • In May 2018, during the violence on the Gaza border, MSF condemned Israel’s use of force, describing it as “unacceptable and inhuman.” MSF further claimed that “this bloodbath is the continuation of the Israeli army’s policy during the last seven weeks: shooting with live ammunition at demonstrators, on the assumption that anyone approaching the separation fence is a legitimate target.” MSF ignored the violent nature of the protests, which included Molotov cocktails, arson, and attempts to breach the border fence with Israel.
  • In August 2016, MSF celebrated its 20 year anniversary of working in Hebron with a “play which displays the ongiong [sic] struggle in Hebron’s H2 area…[and a] photo exhibition showcasing the psychological effects of occupation and violence on Palestinians.”
  • In December 2015, MSF-France launched an exhibition titled “In Between Wars,” meant to display “the haunting and recurrent side of the violence of daily life under occupation.” The exhibition pays tribute to Palestinian “martyrs” and refers to images of “Palestinian young throw[ing] stones and Molotov cocktails at heavily armed Israeli soldiers” as scenes “iconic of the Palestinian resistance against occupation.” The exhibition was described by the head of MSF-USA as “depicting the humanitarian hardships Palestinians face,” but, in reality, the exhibition served as a showcase for virulent anti-Israel propaganda.
    • Roger Cukierman, head of the Council of Jewish Institutions in France, condemned the display as “an apology for terrorism…that could inflame antisemitic violence.”
    • In 2016, the exhibition was displayed in Jordan and the United Arab Emirates.
  • In September 2015, MSF-Spain published a short video glorifying 14-year old Palestinian Ahed Tamimi, who has engaged in numerous provocations against the IDF. In the video, Tamimi is pictured under posters of family members whom she refers to as “martyrs.” One of them, Muataz Washaha, was a member of the PFLP terrorist organization who reportedly planned and carried out terror attacks against Israelis across the West Bank.
    • The video claims disingenuously that “every Friday the village [of Nabi Saleh] demonstrates peacefully” against Israeli policy, thus omitting the numerous planned, directed and premeditated violent incidents instigated by the villagers, including by Tamimi herself.
  • In a July 7, 2015 opinion piece, MSF-USA Executive Director Jason Cone attacked Israeli security policy while omitting Hamas terror attacks against Israeli civilians, alleging: “Israeli fears of rocket fire from Gaza… and the ongoing threat of tunnel-enabled attacks… cannot justify the devastating medical and psychological consequences for Palestinians of the barriers, checkpoints, bombing campaigns, blockades, and incursions.”
  • In a July 2015 promotional video, Mathilde Berthelot, an MSF program manager, charged that Israel uses Palestinian violence “as an alibi for a policy which is repressive and expansionist.” The video refers to Israeli military operations in Gaza as “wholesale massacres” and claims that Palestinians are subjected to daily “humiliation and oppression.”
  • MSF’s internet campaign, “Occupied Minds,” features emotive stories of Palestinian suffering and blaming Israel for their situations. The narratives often have little or nothing to do with medical issues. Descriptions of Israeli measures are devoid of context and erase Palestinian terror and Israeli self-defense.
  • In July 2014, Jonathan Whittall, head of humanitarian analysis at MSF, accused Israel of trapping an entire population in “what is essentially an open-air prison. “ He continues to say that “Some of the prisoners have organised into armed groups and resist their indefinite detention by firing rockets over the prison wall.”
  • In July 2010, MSF worked “closely with an Israeli team of burn specialists” to treat victims of a fuel tanker crash in the Democratic Republic of Congo. According to a Haaretz report, one of Israeli doctors described negative interactions with the MSF volunteers, who “did not want to be around him or the other team members.” In a July 28, 2010 article in the Huffington Post, Alan Dershowitz accused MSF of being “bigoted” and refusing to work with the Israeli doctors. In response, MSF denied that “cooperation was difficult due to alleged anti-Israel sentiment from MSF staff,” or that it “places politics above the best interests of our patients.”
  • MSF accused Israel of “devastating disregard” for civilians during the 2009 Gaza war, alleging that Israel conducted “indiscriminate bombings” during the fighting.
  • In 2007, an MSF employee from Gaza was arrested for allegedly plotting to assassinate Prime Minister Ehud Olmert. The NGO responded that “We are very sad for Bashir, but we want to make it very clear that we make a distinction between his professional work and what he does on his personal time. I don’t think our organization can be held liable for every aspect of its staff’s lives.”

Ties to Terror

  • In November 2023, two MSF doctors, Mahmoud Abu Nujaila and Ahmad Al-Sahar, were killed as a result of a strike that hit Al-Awda hospital in Gaza. Al-Awda hospital is run by an NGO linked to the  PFLP terror group, AWDA Health and Community Association (formerly known as the Union of Health Work Committees, or UHWC). (For more information, read NGO Monitor’s report “MSF in Gaza: Terror-linked Employee and Hospital”)
  • In October 2023, MSF Deputy Cell Manager for the Middle East Region Amber Alayyan affirmed that MSF had “given donations to the [Gaza] Ministry of Health from our own stocks. We basically emptied our stocks to give to the Ministry of Health.” The Gaza Ministry of Health is a Hamas entity.
  • On August 20, 2018, Hani Majdalawi, a nurse working for MSF, “was shot dead…after shooting and throwing a grenade at soldiers.” On August 24, MSF announced it “is working to verify and understand the circumstances regarding this extremely serious incident, and is not able to comment further at this stage.”

Other Activities

2018-2022 Grants Received (amounts in Euro)

Canada (Governments)10,868,00015,176,0006,601,0006,833,0005,362,000
Japan (Ministry of Foreign Affairs)2,294,000405,0001,147,000
Switzerland (Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation -SDC)8,239,0007,500,00011,731,0007,802,000
United Nations34,00047,00039,00014,000

All Articles about Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders)

Further Reading