Denmark outlaws funding to groups supporting BDS or tied to terror
On October 5, 2018, the Danish Foreign Ministry announced significant new criteria for its funding of NGOs.
These guidelines specifically state that projects that promote BDS, organizations that question Israel’s right to exist, and those with ties to terror will not be eligible to receive funds. The guidelines declare,
“The organization and members of its Executive Board and Board of Directors may not be autonomously listed on EU or UN sanctions and/or terrorist lists. Furthermore, they may not be members of entities or groups listed on these lists… The organization must not use Danish funds to finance boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) activities. Furthermore, the organization may not outsource Danish funds to BDS activities… the actions and communications of the organization must not interfere with the goal of Denmark’s commitment to Palestine to support the realization of a two-state solution for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict” (emphasis added).
On October 19, the Danish Foreign Ministry announced grants under its new criteria to NGOs active in the Arab-Israeli conflict. All Palestinian NGOs with ties to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) terror group that had previously received grants are no longer receiving funds. Palestinian NGOs that promote international lawfare against Israel were also absent in the new funding list.
On December 28, the Danish Foreign Minister Anders Samuelsen also published an op-ed in the Danish newspaper Politiken stating,
“I have also cast a critical light on the support that Denmark gives to Israeli and Palestinian civil society organizations. The support is intended, among other things, for efforts within human rights and democracy, but there were doubts as to whether the support was abused to pay tribute to terror against Israel. That is why we have now tightened up the support so that it goes to fewer organizations and with sharper control – but we have not cut the overall support for civil society organizations in Israel and Palestine.”
This breakthrough reflects years of NGO Monitor’s detailed research, reports, and analyses, as well as educating decision makers, and builds on developments occurring throughout Europe. For instance, the Netherlands now prohibits funding to groups that “promote hate and antisemitism” and will not finance activities that “propagate BDS against Israel.” Last year, the Swiss Parliament approved a resolution on NGO funding stating that Switzerland will not support groups that promote antisemitism, racism, and hatred. NGO Monitor will continue to urge other countries to adopt guidelines that prevent support for NGOs that promote antisemitism, incite to violence, have terror ties, and/or engage in BDS campaigns against Israel.