Addameer

Introduction

 

Addameer is a Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) “affiliate.” The PFLP is a terrorist organization designated as such by the USEUCanada, and Israel. For more information on Addameer’s PFLP ties, read NGO Monitor’s report “Addameer’s Ties to the PFLP Terrorist Group.”

Profile

Country/TerritoryPalestinian Authority
Websitehttp://www.addameer.org/
Founded1992
In their own words“Offers free legal aid to political prisoners, advocates their rights at the national and international level, and works to end torture and other violations of prisoners' rights through monitoring, legal procedures and solidarity campaigns.”

Funding

  • Addameer has not published its annual income or funding amounts since 2014, reflecting a lack of transparency and accountability.
  • Addameer’s donors have included Ireland, Norway, Spain, Switzerland, and the Heinrich Boll Foundation (Germany). (See table below for further funding information.)
  • According to Addameer’s 2019 annual report, “Addameer remains subject to the financial instability due to the shrinking funding space to Palestinian human rights civil society organisations that mostly affect the core fund. The majority of donor funds provide financial grants to specific projects. This limits Addameer flexibility in responding to urgent events pertinent to Palestinian political prisoners such as hunger strikes or other issues that require immediate planning and response to legal monitoring and protection as well as advocacy.”
  • In 2019-2021, Addameer was an implementing partner on a €799,362 project funded by the Basque Agency for Development Cooperation (AVCD).
    • Other implementing partners included Defense for Children International – Palestine (DCI-P) and Union of Palestinian Women’s Committees (UPWC), both of which, like Addameer, have ties to the  Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) – a designated terrorist organization by the EUUSCanada, and Israel.
  • In 2016-2020, Addameer was an implementing partner on a €670,203 project funded by the Navarre Autonomous Community titled “Protection of the rights of the Palestinian population detained in Israeli prisons.”
  • In 2020, Addameer received CHF 135,763 from Switzerland.
  • In 2019, Addameer received €80,625 from Ireland.
  • In 2014-2019, Addameer, was granted (directly and via Spanish NGOs) €1.1 million from the Basque and Navarre communities of Spain. (See table below for further funding information.)
    • In May 2016, the Basque Agency for Development Cooperation (AVCD) signed an agreement with Addameer to “help Palestinian prisoners,” granting the organization €199,988.
    • Addameer was granted €84,173 in 2015 and €84,745 in 2016 from the Basque region of Navarre for a joint project with Spanish NGO SODePaz titled “Protection of the rights of Palestinians detained in Israeli prisons.”

Activities

  • 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.
  • Addameer conducts a youth program called Al-Da’maer which “empowers the youth’s role in strengthening and protecting human rights.” According to Addameer, “Participants are trained in international humanitarian law, international human rights law, establishing advocating campaigns and managing small projects. [The] Al-Da’maer program has initiated activities in support of the prisoners’ cause on prisoner’s day…” (Click here to read more on this program.)
    • On April 3, 2016, Addameer posted an article about an Al-Da’maer training course, conducted by “released prisoner” Ismat Mansour and his associate Hasan Karajah, as well as Addameer staff. Mansour was sentenced to 22 years in prison for assisting in the kidnapping and murder of the Israeli civilian Haim Mizrahi in 1993. In an interview to Israeli TV upon his release, Mansour said, “I have no regrets…I was part of the struggle of my people, I don’t reconsider my contribution.” On November 18, 2020, Massar News reported that Mansour was a leader in the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP). The DFLP is a terrorist organization designated as such by Israel.
  • In January 2020, Palestinian NGO Network (PNGO), of which Addameer is a member, vehemently opposed a new clause in European Union grant contracts with Palestinian NGOs that prohibits grantees from working with and funding organizations and individuals designated on the EU’s terror lists. According to media reports, PNGO claimed that Palestinian terrorist organizations are “political parties.”

Addameer’s Ties to the PFLP

Addameer Staff Ties to the PFLP

Political Advocacy

  • Refers to the Israeli army as the “Israeli Occupying Forces,” and accuses Israel of “collective punishment,” “war crimes,” and a “policy of using Palestinian prisoners as pawns to achieve political and military gains.”
  • Accuses Israel of “committing nothing short of a modern-day ethnic cleansing before our eyes; in the continuing quest for full annexation of Palestinian land and the expansion of Israel’s colonial frontier. The time is more urgent than ever for the international community to hold Israel accountable for its recurring and blatant war crimes against Palestinians.”
  • Addameer endorses the Deadly Exchange campaign led by Jewish Voice for Peace that aims to “end police exchange programs between the US and Israel.” JVP claims that American Jewish organizations and programs are to blame for police violence against minorities in America. The campaign also invoked antisemitic tropes.
    • The initial “Deadly Exchange” video labeled AIPAC, ADL, Birthright and other Jewish organizations as being responsible for these exchanges, and urged viewers to “Hold accountable the Jewish institutions who run and fund the deadly exchange.”
  • In April 2021, Addameer endorsed US Congresswoman McCollum’s proposed legislation that would “prohibit Israel from using U.S. taxpayer dollars on the military detention, abuse, or ill-treatment of Palestinian children in Israeli military detention.” The entirety of the proposed bill is premised on factually inaccurate claims from anti-Israel advocacy NGOs, including direct quotes from DCIP’s “No Way to Treat a Child” 2016 report and website.
  • In February 2021, Addameer was a signatory on a policy paper titled “United States Policy on Palestine: 2021 and Beyond” calling for the “US to reevaluate its past blanket support of Israel” and “end the decades long environment of impunity that it has enabled for Israel to entrench its settler colonization and apartheid in the Palestinian territory.” The policy calls to “ban the import of all Israeli settlement products and services” and “End all military aid to Israel.”
  • In January 2021, Addameer, alongside a number of Palestinian organizations, issued a declaration that the “Vaccine Roll-Out Exposes Israel’s Inhumane Acts of Apartheid.” Addameer falsely claimed that Israel has “legal obligations” to “ensure that quality vaccines be provided to Palestinians living under Israeli occupation and control.” The NGOs altogether ignore that Palestinians residing in Jerusalem are part of the Israeli health care system; that under the Oslo Accords the PA is responsible for health care of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza; and that the PA has adopted its own vaccine policy for its population.
  • In October 2019, Addameer General Director Sahar Francis spoke at an event in Berlin about the “institutionalized regime of systematic oppression and domination by Israelis over Palestinians, committed with the intention of maintaining that regime in line with the definition of apartheid by the International Criminal Court.”
  • On May 18, 2019, as a member of the Palestinian Human Rights Organization Council (PHROC), Addameer was a signatory on a statement referring to all of Jerusalem as “occupied,” and called for the UN to “take a firm stand against…unlawful unilateral measures to be taken by the U.S. in favor of an unveiled attempt at legitimizing Israel’s illegal settlement enterprise, occupation and colonization.” The statement further called to “Ban Israeli settlement products” and “Impose individual sanctions, including travel bans and asset freezes, on individuals that are identified as responsible for or complicit in the commission of war crimes and crimes against humanity.”
  • In May 2018, Sahar Francis participated in the “Palestinian Freedom Conference: Overcoming the Ongoing Nakba,” which discussed how “In late 1947, colonial Zionist paramilitary forces began the process of ethnically cleansing more than 750,000 Palestinians…70 years later…in Palestine a process of ongoing ethnic cleansing via occupation, colonisation, apartheid, and cruel siege continues apace, with no intervention from the international community.”
  • In May 2018, during the violence on the Gaza border, Addameer published a statement accusing Israel of “excessive, lethal force… These practices attest to the continued domination and subjugation of the Palestinian people. The marches and Israel’s excessive use of force and unlawful killings demonstrate the urgent need to ensure protection for the Palestinian people and to hold Israel to account in accordance with international law.” Addameer ignored the violent nature of the protests, which have consisted of an organized armed attack on the Israeli border and IDF positions, attempts to destroy and breach the border fence, and sustained arson, rocket, and mortar attacks on Israeli civilian communities.
  • On September 26, 2017, General Director Sahar Francis spoke at the European Parliament in Brussels at an event titled “The Role of Women in the Palestinian Popular Struggle.” The event featured Leila Khaled whose affiliation was listed as the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), and was organized by Unadikum, an NGO that participated in a gala to raise funds for the Union of Health Workers Committee (UHWC), a PFLP-affiliated group in Gaza.
  • On February 8, 2017, Addameer released a report accusing Israel of economically exploiting Palestinian “political prisoners,” claiming that this comes as “part of Israel’s sophisticated system of control put in place in order to break apart Palestinian resistance.” The statement further claims that “the integration of the PA into the Israeli prison system” has “made Palestinian society responsible for facilitating the imprisonment of those who resist the occupation and colonization of Palestinian land.” The report alleges that Israel attempts “to neutralize prisoners identified as political threats by forcing them to dedicate their energies to struggling for basic material needs, rather than to the kind of struggles for which they were originally imprisoned” (emphases added).
  • On February 22, 2016, during Apartheid Week events in London, Addameer General Director Sahar Francis stated that while it was “not certain or proved…she shared with the audience the increasing suspicions that Israel was harvesting organs from Palestinian corpses before returning them” (emphasis added).
  • Between 2013-2015, Addameer participated in the campaign “Love Under Apartheid,” which alleges that the “Israeli apartheid system affects individuals by restricting a deeply personal right: their right to love.”

ICC Activities

  • In April 2021, Addameer launched a petition calling for the International Criminal Court to “investigate crimes by the Israeli military judicial system as part of the Israeli apartheid regime, and further call for the end of prosecuting Palestinian civilians in Israeli military courts.”
  • In November 2019, Addameer signed a letter to Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court Fatou Bensouda, calling to open “an official, full-scale investigation into the ‘situation in Palestine’” and the “possible war crimes and crimes against humanity committed” as the “absence of an official investigation…has fuelled the already existing culture of impunity.”
  • On April 17, 2017, Addameer, as a member of the Palestinian Human Rights Organizations Council (PHROC), released a statement on Palestinian Prisoners’ Day stating that “This year marks 50 years of torture of Palestinian political prisoners through a military system which has historically been endemic and various forms of physical and psychological torture and ill-treatment,” and calling on the International Criminal Court to “open an investigation into the case of Palestinian prisoners and detainees, and bring those who have tortured, extrajudicially executed, forcibly transferred, and arbitrary (sic) detained Palestinians to be held to accountable.”

BDS Activities

  • In August 2021, Addameer signed a letter to the States Parties to the Arms Trade Treaty calling to “put an end to Israel’s notorious use of arms and military equipment…by immediately imposing a comprehensive two-way arms embargo on Israel.” According to the letter, “This systematic brutality, perpetrated throughout the past seven decades of Israel’s colonialism, apartheid, pro-longed illegal belligerent occupation, persecution, and closure, is only possible because of the complicity of some governments and corporations around the world.”
  • In March 2021, Addameer, together with the pro-BDS NGO War on Want, published a report on “Israel’s military court system in the occupied West Bank.” The report calls to “increase support for Palestinian human rights defenders,” as well as “implement a two-way arms embargo on Israel.”
  •  In September 2020, Addameer called for the UN General Assembly to “Launch international investigations into Israel’s apartheid regime over the Palestinian people as a whole, as well as associated State and individual criminal responsibility,” to “Ban arms trade and military-security cooperation with Israel,” and “Prohibit all trade with illegal Israeli settlements and ensure that companies refrain from and terminate business activities with Israel’s illegal settlement enterprise.”
  • In July 2020, in response to the “Report of the Special Rapporteur addressing Israel’s Collective Punishment Policy,” Addameer called on “Third States to adopt effective measures to put an end to Israel’s illegal and inhumane policies of collective punishment, including sanctions and countermeasures, to bring the illegal situation to an end” (emphasis added).
  • In May 2020, Addameer was a signatory on a statement calling for “Immediate targeted sanctions to stop Israel’s annexation and apartheid.” The statement further called for “A ban on arms trade and military-security cooperation with Israel,” “Suspension of trade and cooperation agreements with Israel,” and “Investigation and prosecution of individuals and corporate actors responsible for war crimes/crimes against humanity in the context of Israel’s regime of illegal occupation and apartheid.”
  • In 2018-2019, Addameer lobbied intensively in support of the discriminatory UN database of businesses operating across the 1949 Armistice line, aimed at bolstering BDS campaigns against Israel. Addameer has signed multiple letters to the UN calling for the database to be implemented without further delay. According to Addameer, “the Database should be a mechanism that assists states in meeting their obligations under international law, including the obligation not to recognize as lawful – even implicitly – the illegal situation created by Israeli settlements and not to contribute to maintaining this illegal situation.”
  • In May 2019, Addameer was a signatory on a statement calling on the German Bundestag to revoke its joint resolution defining BDS campaigns against Israel as antisemitic
  • In April 2017, on Palestinian Prisoners’ Day, Addameer urged “supporters of justice around the world to take action to support the Palestinian prisoners whose bodies and lives are on the line for freedom and dignity” by “join[ing a] BDS Campaign” and “Organiz[ing] an action at HP office in your city to highlight the role of corporations involved in – and profiting from – the political imprisonment of Palestinians by the Israeli occupation.”
  • In February 2017, as a member of the Palestinian Human Rights Organizations Council (PHROC), released a statement calling upon “the international community to abide by their international obligations” and “act immediately by imposing sanctions against Israel,” as a result of the passing of the “Regularization Law,” which is “another brazen tool for Israel to confiscate privately held and registered Palestinian property for its illegal settlement enterprise.”
  • In August 2016, submitted a joint complaint to the UN Special Rapporteur concerning review of the residency status of Omar Barghouti, a prominent proponent of BDS. The statement falsely describes BDS as “peacefully pursu[ing] a human rights agenda based on an international law framework”; in fact, BDS are tactics of political warfare, based on the exploitation of human rights double standards, comparisons to apartheid South Africa, and false accusations of “war crimes.”
  • In February 2016, issued a joint statement that “For decades, Israel has failed to uphold its duties as Occupying Power and has instead deepened its occupation and regime of colonialism and apartheid” and “affirm[ed] the right of all individuals to participate in and advocate for boycott, divestment, and sanction actions, and calls on states and businesses to uphold their related legal responsibilities” and stated that the EU November 2015 labeling move against Israeli settlement products is “insufficient,” calling for a complete ban (emphasis added).
  • In April 2015 sent a joint letter to the UN Secretary General urging the UN to divest from the British security company G4S as a result of its servicing detention centers known for “widespread torture and mistreatment of Palestinian political prisoners, including children.” An accompanying report alleged that G4S’s activities “represent a clear facilitation and continuation of war crimes against Palestinian prisoners.” According to General Director Sahar Francis, “At a time when Israel is stepping up its campaign of mass incarceration as a way of repressing Palestinian society, G4S should immediately end its role in the notorious Israeli prison system, as well as its involvement in securing Israeli checkpoints and illegal settlements.”

UN Activities

  • Lobbies the UN “to ask them to intervene to hold Israel accountable and pressure it to change its policies and practices.”
  • In 2018-2019, Addameer lobbied intensively in support of the discriminatory UN database of businesses operating across the 1949 Armistice line, aimed at bolstering BDS campaigns against Israel (see further information above.)
  • On March 17, 2017, Addameer, BADILAl-Haq, and Society of St. Yves held a side event at the 34th session of the UN Human Rights Council on “Collective Punishment in Jerusalem” discussing “Israel’s collective punishment measures targeting the protected Palestinian population in Occupied East Jerusalem.”
  • In November 2016, Addameer co-authored a submission to Michael Lynk, UN Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights Situation in the Palestinian Territories, on “Human Rights Defenders in the OPT…highlight[ing] the repressive environment within which human rights defenders (HRDs) work in the Occupied Palestinian Territory.” The submission referred to Manal Tamimi, a fieldworker for the Women’s Center for Legal Aid and Counseling (WCLAC) as a “human rights defender.”
    • Tamimi frequently utilizes antisemitic and violent rhetoric and imagery on social media. In August 2015, Tamimi tweeted, “I do hate Israel, i (sic) wish a thrid Intefada (sic) coming soon and people rais (sic) up and kills all these zionist settlers everywhere.”
  • In February 2015, Addameer sent a joint letter to the UN Secretary General urging him to “list Israel’s armed forced in the annex” of the “Annual Report on Children and Armed Conflict for committing grave violations against children in the Occupied Palestinian Territory” (emphasis added).
  • General Director Sahar Francis lobbied a roundtable meeting of the “Committee on the Exercise of the Unalienable Rights of the Palestinian People” in Geneva on April 24, 2014. The roundtable focused on “UN procedures and mechanisms to address the issue of political prisoners” and “International courts and options for the case of Palestinian prisoners and detainees.”
  • In 2009, provided testimony before the Goldstone commission, alleging Israeli “violations of international law” and “racist Israeli policies” and falsely accusing Israel of using Palestinian detainees as “human shields.”

Partners

2014-2022 Funding to Addameer

GovernmentFunderYear(s)Total
GermanyHeinrich Böll Foundation2016N/A
IrelandIrishAid2019€80,625
2018€75,000
2017€75,000
2016€75,000
Denmark, Sweden, Switzerland, and the NetherlandsHuman Rights and International Humanitarian Law Secretariat2014-2017$498,700
SwitzerlandSwiss Agency for Development and Cooperation 2020CHF 135,763
2019CHF 139,347
2018CHF 118,280
NorwayNorwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs2016-2015NOK 1,800,000
SpainBasque Government2019-2021€799,362
2017-2019€180,000
2015-2019€199,988
SODePAZ via Provincial Council of Gipuzkoa2016-2018€81,248
Municipality of Barcelone2017€162,712
2016€57,436
Autonomous community of Navarre2020€120,000
2019€158,486
2018€153,486
2017€153,486
Municipality of Vitoria-Gasteiz2016-2017€68,332
Municipality of Rivas-Vaciamadrid2016€22,630
Municipality of San Sebastián2020-2022€48,477
2019-2021€50,000
2016-2018€66,489
2015-2017€69,429

Footnotes

  1. NGO Monitor has on file documented statements from the PFLP’s West Bank and Gaza branch, as well as from its branch in  in Syria, that refer to Jarrar as a member of the organization’s political bureau in at least 20122019.

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