Association France Palestine Solidarité (AFPS)

Profile

Country/TerritoryFrance
Websitewww.france-palestine.org
Founded2001
In their own words“The members of France - Palestine Solidarity Association are attached to the right of peoples to self-determination and to the defense of the individual. Their purpose is to develop solidarity with the Palestinian people and to support them particularly in their fight for the fulfilment of their national rights.”

Funding

  • Association France Palestine Solidarité (AFPS) does not publish financial information, reflecting a lack of transparency and accountability.1
  • AFPS receives government funding from the French government through different governmental bodies.
  • In 2016-2019, AFD provided AFPS with €320,000for agricultural projects with Ma’an Development Center.
    • In May 2019, MA’AN Director General Sami Khader attended a memorial event organized by the PFLPthat centered on PFLP political bureau member Rabah Muhanna. The hall was decorated with PFLP paraphernalia.
    • In May 2018, Ma’an Development Center employeeAhmad Abdallah Aladini was killed in the violence on the Gaza border. Aladini was a “comrade” of the PFLP terror group.
BodyAmount Year(s)
L'Agence francaise pour le développement (French Development Agency –AFD)€320,0002017-2019
€139,5502012-2014
France (Financial effort of the state in favor of the associations)€34,0002016
€25,5002015
€53,0002014
€36,5002013
Regional Councils (Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes)€34,5002016
€11,0002015
€6,0002013-2014
The Council of Île de France Region€1,5002016
€3,172 2014
€2,8272013

Activities

Funding to Politicized NGOs

Political Advocacy

BDS

  • Active in BDS (boycotts, divestment, and sanctions) campaigns against Israel, despite the fact that anti-Israel boycotts are prohibited in France. AFPS’ organizational report calls for the boycott of all Israeli products and institutions (sports, academic, and cultural).
  • AFPS further calls for the end of financial ties between French banks and insurance companies with Israeli banks and enterprises, accusing them of being “actors of colonization.”
  • Advocates for the suspension of the EU-Israel Association Agreement.
  • Promotes the academic boycott against Israel.
  • In September 2020, AFPS 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 August 2020, AFPS “mobilized” against Israeli participation in the Tour de France by launching a campaign titled “#IsraelHoldUpNation.” According to the campaign, “When we know the reality of the crimes committed by this state against the Palestinian people since its creation, crimes that it continues to perpetrate today, we cannot be fooled: the objective is to camouflage these crimes behind an image of openness.”
  • In January 2020, as part of a broader BDS campaign, the AFPS participated in a campaign against Puma.
  • In October 2019, AFPS launched a campaign against “complicit tourism agencies” such as Airbnb and TripAdvisor, demanding “ethical tourism” and to “remove accommodation in Israeli settlements.”
  • On June 13, 2018, along with the Platform of French NGOs for Palestine (PFP), International Federation of Human Rights (FIDH), Al-Haq, and Ligue des droits de l’Hommes (LdH), AFPS published a report, “The Jerusalem light-rail and how French companies contribute to the settlement of Occupied Palestinian Territory,” which targeted the French companies Systra, Egis, and Alstom that are involved in construction of the Jerusalem light-rail. The report calls for the companies to “terminate their contracts with the Israeli authorities” and urged the French State “to take all the measures needed to ensure that the three public operators, SNCF, RATP and CDC, terminate the contracts signed in the context of the implementation of the Jerusalem tramway, by the companies they control, SYSTRA and Egis; and to take all the measure needed to prevent any participation or investment by French companies that would contribute to Israeli settlement.”
  • In March 2017,  along with groups including International Federation of Human Rights (FIDH),  Al-Haq, CCFD- Terre Solidaire, and the French League of Human Rights (LDH) published a document ‘The dangerous ties between French banks and insurances companies with the Israeli occupation‘, which recommends that the French government pressure French financial institutions to “disengage without delay from any financial link with the Israeli banking system,” and create “a legislative proposal prohibiting enterprises from all sectors to invest in the settlements.” The report only points to very minor and indirect connections, if at all, to settlements, and French courts have repeatedly found that such business activity is not illegal.The report was funded by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA).
  • In February 2017, along with members of the European Parliament (EP), lobbied the EP President to cancel a session of Delegation for Relations with Israel where Sydney Knafou, CEO of Casimex, was scheduled to testify on European labeling guidelines. AFPS accused the company of violating French and European law.  Despite AFPS’ lobbying efforts, the event went as scheduled and Knafou testified (02:35) that as a result of BDS efforts at the EU, “For several years now, but, crucially, in the last few months, my business has been disrupted by unhelpful statements made at the EU level which are politically motivated and unrelated to any legitimate European business concern,” He further noted, “There is no justification for penalizing EU businesses on the basis of foreign policy objectives. None…this disrupts trade in a manner that is incompatible with international trade law, without a proper legal basis under EU law, and in a manner that is completely disproportionate in light of the objectives of the European Union.”
  • In 2007, AFPS and the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) filed a petition with the Tribunal of Nanterre against Veolia and Alstom for alleged violation of “public order.” In the petition, the two French companies were accused of violating international law for their involvement in the construction of the Light Rail train. The Tribunal of Nanterre dismissed the case in 2011, and the Versailles Court of Appeals upheld the decision in 2013.
    • The court ruled that the AFPS did not have standing to bring suit because it was not “defending a collective interest specific to its membership as distinct from the public interest of Palestinians in general.”
    • The court also noted that building the Jerusalem Light Rail was not illegal because occupation law allows for the governance of occupied territory and includes the building of transportation infrastructure. Finally, the court emphasized that the determination of the legality of a contract cannot be contingent on political considerations advanced by a third party.

Controversial statements by staff members

Partners

Footnotes

  1. All translation in this document were made by NGO Monitor.

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