World Organization Against Torture (OMCT) (Geneva)
- In 2019, total income was Swiss francs (CHF) 4.5 million; total expenses were CHF 4.4 million.
- Donors include Denmark, Finland, Ireland, Switzerland, Netherlands, United States, European Commission, Liechtenstein, UNICEF, Bread for the World (Germany), National Endowment for Democracy (United States), Open Society Foundation, Sigrid Rausing Trust (UK), and the Oak Foundation.
- In 2019, OMCT was an implementing partner on two projects with the European Union titled “The European Union human rights defenders mechanism: protectdefenders.EU” (€15 million) and “The EU emergency fund for human rights defenders at risk” (€3.3 million).
- OMCT has granted $28,552 (2016-2017) to the Israeli NGO, Public Committee against Torture in Israel (PCATI).
- PCATI regularly circulates unverifiable allegations of Israeli torture, using them as the basis for campaigns in international forums and Israeli courts.
- In 2017, OMCT received $90,000 from the National Endowment for Democracy (United States) for “Documenting Torture in Challenging Situations.”
- The World Organization Against Torture (OMCT) is a Geneva based coalition of NGOs comprising 311 local, national and regional organizations “fighting against arbitrary detention, torture, summary and extrajudicial executions, forced disappearances and other forms of violence.”
- Created the “Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders” with the International Federation of Human Rights (FIDH) to “offer concrete and personalised assistance via international fact-finding missions, judicial observation and support missions, solidarity missions, and the granting of material assistance to defenders and defender organisations.”
- This has included calling on Israel to lift the travel ban placed on Shawan Jabarin, Al-Haq’s General Director, who has alleged ties to the PFLP terrorist organization, and attempting to cancel the deportation order of Omar Shakir, Human Rights Watch’s Israel and Palestine Country Director, who has been a consistent supporter of a one-state framework and advocate for BDS campaigns, and campaigning for an end to “attacks against prominent Palestinian human rights organisations.”
- OMCT makes numerous submissions each year to the UN Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment(CAT). In 2014, OMCT launched an initiative to “mobilise and coordinate the activities of civil society organisations in relation to the CAT Convention and its Committee” by “supporting their actions, public outreach and campaigning at the national level, and their interaction with CAT and other UN mechanisms at the international level.”
- The United Nations Committee Against Torture links to OMCT’s website on its homepage, providing it and other selected NGOs free advertising and promotion. The privileging of OMCT and these other organizations on an official UN website is done without oversight or transparency.
- In July 2020, OMCT urged the Israeli authorities to “immediately and unconditionally release Mr. Salah Hamouri, and to put an end to all forms of harassment, including at the judicial level, against him and his family.”
- Until his arrest on August 23, 2017, Hamouri worked as a field researcher for the Palestinian NGO Addameer, an “affiliate” of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) terrorist group. Hamouri was previously arrested in 2005 for “attempting to assassinate Ovadia Yosef…and for his involvement with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.” The PFLP has referred to Hamouri as a “comrade.”
- In January 2017, Pierre Galand, President of OMCT-Europe, issued a press release on behalf of the European Coordination of Committees and Associations for Palestine (ECCP) calling for the arrest of Tzipi Livni for “war crimes and crimes against humanity,” as she was “responsible for the decisions taken during the Operation Cast Lead.”
- In December 2016, signed a joint statement alleging that individuals and organizations “working on Palestinian human rights” are “facing intensifying threats.” The statement condemned attacks in “total aim to silence and undermine any resistance to Israel’s unlawful policies…and should rather be examined within the broader context of impunity in Israel itself.”
- In November 2016, OMCT signed a joint letter calling for the European Union and Horizon 2020 to “immediately stop funding the LAWTRAIN project,” a program in partnership with Israel, Belgium, Portugal, and Spain. The letter drew attention to the “illegality of financing an Israeli entity which is headquartered in Occupied East Jerusalem, namely the Israeli police” as this “entity is in charge of the national police and the prison services, both responsible for serious human rights violations.”
- In May 2016, OMCT participated at the UN Committee Against Torture (CAT) periodic review of Israel, presenting unverified testimony and invented new standards of torture to further its political goal of demonizing and marginalizing Israel.
- In March 2016, OMCT and Defense for Children International–Palestine (DCI-P) submitted a joint report to the UN Committee Against Torture, alleging “widespread and systematic ill-treatment and torture and the excessive use of force by Israeli forces.” The report makes numerous false and misleading claims about the IDF and Israeli Military Courts. (Read NGO Monitor’s report “No Way to Represent a Child: Defense for Children International Palestine’s Distortions of the Israeli Justice System.”)
- Pierre Galand, president of OMCT-Europe, is alsothe president of Association Belgo-Palestinienne (ABP) and the President of ECCP (a Brussels-based association of NGOs cooperating with the UN Committee on the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People). Galand was the general coordinator of the Russell 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), and is a former Belgian Senator.
- Galand is a prominent figure in BDS and lawfare campaigns against Israel.
- Galand has been involved in promoting BDS campaigns in Belgium since 2005 (see NGO Monitor’s report, “European Coordinating Committee of NGOs [ECCP] Meeting to Promote Boycotts and Divestment.”)
- In 2002, Galand was expelled from Israel, together with seven other Belgian activists, under suspicion that they would “likely  disturb the peace.”
- In a 2018 interview in the Belgian communist party journal, Galand declared that “making Gaza an Auschwitz without crematoriums but organizing the slow death of its citizens is not so far from what the colonizers of today have known in their very long journey enamelled with pogroms.” In addition, Galand affirmed that Zionism is a neo-colonialism stating: “I then understood for example that the famous Balfour declaration of 1922 by which Great Britain gave its agreement to the settlement of the Jewish populations in Palestine requested by the world Zionist organization led by the Rothschild family, was only the neocolonialist draft which we see today to which extremes it can lead.” (Emphasis added). Such declarations are a clear violation of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) Working Definition of Antisemitism.
- In 2015, Galand accused the Israeli government of applying “to the West Bank the same deadly therapy already used in Gaza in 2009 and 2014.”
- In an April 2016 editorial on ABP’s website, “The dehumanization of the Palestinians,” Galand refers to Gaza as a “big concentration camp” and accuses the “Israeli occupation forces” of kidnapping “1000 children in the last two months of 2015,” without citing any sources for such a claim.
- OMCT has 6 members in “Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories”: Addameer, Al-Haq, Al-Mezan, Defence for Children International, Hamoked, and The Public Committee Against Torture in Israel (PCATI).
- Addameer is an “affiliate” of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), a terrorist organization designated as such by the US, EU, Canada, and Israel. Several of Addameer’s current and former employees, as well as lawyers that work for Addameer, are linked to the terror group.
- Addameer is a leader of campaigns in support of Palestinians prisoners convicted of security offenses, referring to them as “political prisoners” and altogether omitting the context of violence and terror.
- Al-Haq is a leader in anti-Israel “lawfare” campaigns and BDS activities.
- In May 2018, Visa, Mastercard, and American Express shut down online credit card donations to Al-Haq due to the group’s ties to the PFLP.
- Al-Haq General Director Shawan Jabarin is tied to the PFLP. As a result, his requests for Israeli exit visas have been denied on several occasions, and he has been denied entry by Jordan. In a series of court cases in 2007-2009, the Israeli High Court of Justice found Jabarin to be a senior PFLP activist (2007, 2008, 2009).
- In May 2019, Jabarin attended a memorial event organized by the PFLP. It centered on PFLP political bureau member Rabah Muhanna, who, according to information posted by the PFLP, “contributed to the establishment” of several PFLP-affiliated NGOs. The hall was decorated with PFLP paraphernalia.
- Defence for Children International – Palestine
- Numerous individuals with alleged ties to the PFLP have been employed and appointed as board members at Defense for Children International – Palestine (DCI-P). For more information on DCI-P’s PFLP ties, read NGO Monitor’s report “Defense for Children International – Palestine’s Ties to the PFLP Terror Group.”
- DCI-P leads the campaign exploiting children to promote demonization of Israel. Many of its allegations are false and part of attempts to smear Israel with allegations of “war crimes” and promote BDS.
- Highly active in anti-Israel lawfare campaigns, exploiting courts and international legal bodies to seek arrest warrants against Israeli government officials, file lawsuits against companies and governments doing business with Israel, and lobby for cases against Israelis at the International Criminal Court (ICC).
- A number of Al Mezan officials and employees have links to the PFLP and one has ties to Hamas. Additionally, Al-Mezan officials and board members speak at PFLP events, and many have posted material on their social media accounts promoting terror groups or utilizing antisemitic imagery and rhetoric. For more information on Al Mezan’s PFLP ties, read NGO Monitor’s report “Al Mezan Center For Human Rights’ Ties to the PFLP Terror Group.”
- Regularly engages in advocacy, filing petitions and briefings to various government agencies and the United Nations. HaMoked makes inaccurate and inflammatory allegations of Israeli “apartheid,” “deportations,” “torture,” and “forcible transfers,” and accuses Israel of “collective punishment” and of “ghetto-ization of the West Bank.”
- The Public Committee Against Torture in Israel (PCATI)
- Regularly circulates unverifiable allegations of Israeli torture, using them as the basis for campaigns in international forums and Israeli courts.
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