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One would expect that Israel’s designation of six Palestinian non-governmental organizations (NGOs) as terrorist groups in October 2021 would raise serious security and intelligence issues. But for their European funders, the designations are seen through a narrow political lens, reflecting longstanding close partnerships with Palestinian NGOs.

Since the designations, some European officials – particularly officials dealing with the Palestinian Authority – lobbied intensively for official statements in support of their NGOs allies. They succeeded last month: First, one of the designated groups, Al-Haq, claimed that the EU had lifted its suspension of funding (this claim has not been confirmed).

Then, on July 12, 2022, Belgium, Denmark, Spain, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, and Sweden published a joint statement asserting that Israel did not provide “substantial information… that would justify reviewing policies.” Finally, Norway, which had never stopped funding designated NGOs, issued its own statement of support.