As Human Rights Watch (HRW)’s campaigns targeting Israel have become even more intense, its representatives are also participating in events sponsored by groups and individuals tied to internationally designated terrorist organizations.

HRW Israel and Palestine Director Omar Shakir is scheduled to participate in conference, “Challenging Apartheid in Palestine: Reclaiming the Narrative, Formulating A Vision” (June 18-23), hosted by the Istanbul Sabahattin Zaim University. Conference organizers and sponsors, as well as other participants, are linked to various terror groups, including Hamas, Islamic Jihad, Hezbollah, and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP).

Additionally, several other panelists represent pro-BDS NGOs, an agenda that Shakir and HRW have long championed, in both principle and in practice.

(For information on Shakir’s role in HRW’s BDS campaigns, , see NGO Monitor’s Resource Page on Omar Shakir (HRW) Court Case.)

Terror-linked organizers, sponsors, and participants

Sami al Arian

Mohammed Akram al Adlouni

Osama Abuirshaid

  • Currently National Policy Director for American Muslims for Palestine (AMP), Abuirshaid formerly edited IAP’s newspaper and is also slated to speak at the event.
  • During the 2014 Gaza war, the website of Hamas’ Izz a-Din al-Qassam Brigades published an article written by Abuirshaid.

Screenshot of Abuirshaid’s article on Hamas’ Hamas’ Izz a-Din al-Qassam Brigades website (Arabs plot against the resistance in Gaza, published July 19, 2014)

Shawan Jabarin

  • According to a 1995 Israeli submission to the UN, Jabarin was convicted in 1985 for recruiting and arranging training for members for the PFLP. A 1994 Israeli statement to the UN notes that he “had not discontinued his terrorist involvement and maintains his position in the leadership of the PFLP.”
  • In 2007, the Israeli Supreme Court rejected his appeal to go abroad, stating that “the current petitioner is apparently acting in the manner of Doctor Jekyll and Mister Hyde, acting some of the time as the CEO of a human rights organization, and at other times as an activist in a terror organization which has not shied away from murder and attempted murder, which have nothing to do with rights…”
  • In 2009, the Israeli Supreme Court stated, “We found that the material pointing to the petitioner’s involvement in the activity of terrorist entities is concrete and reliable material.”
  • On May 14, 2019, Jabarin attended a PFLP-organized a memorial in Ramallah for the terror organization’s late political bureau member, Rabah Muhanna.
  • Jabarin is a member of the HRW’s Middle East board, and is Secretary General of the Paris based FIDH.

Other NGO participants

Representatives of a number of BDS-supporting NGOs and other BDS activists are scheduled to participate in the conference:

  • Josh Ruebner
  • Huwaida Arraf (National Lawyers Guild)
  • Vincent Warren (Center for Constitutional Rights)
  • Estee Chandler (Jewish Voice for Peace)
  • Eran Efrati
  • Nora Borrows (Electronic Intifada)
  • Osama Abuirshaid (American Muslims for Palestine)
  • Nerdeen Kiswani (Students for Justice in Palestine)
  • Miko Peled