European Legal Support Center (ELSC)


In their own words“the first and only independent organisation providing professional legal support and assistance to associations, groups and individuals advocating for Palestinian rights in Europe. The ELSC intervenes to end arbitrary restrictions and criminalization of peaceful advocacy and humanitarian work”



Legal Activities

Political Advocacy

  • In April 2023, ELSC was a signatory on a letter to the United Nations Secretary-General urging the UN to reject the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism. According to the letter, the IHRA definition “opens the door to labeling as antisemitic… findings of major Israeli, Palestinian and global human rights organizations that Israeli authorities are committing the crime against humanity of apartheid against Palestinians.” (See more on IHRA above.)
  • In August 2022, following criticism of the UN Commission of Inquiry’s use of antisemitic rhetoric, ELSC signed a joint statement “extend[ing] their full support and pledg[ing] their ongoing cooperation with the UN Commission of Inquiry on Palestine.” The statement affirmed that “the present Commission is a crucial step toward the recognition and remedy of Israel’s settler-colonial and apartheid regime as the root cause of Israel’s perpetual violations of international law in Palestine.”
    • In July 2022, Commissioner Miloon Kothari made antisemitic comments on a podcast, claiming that the “Jewish lobby” controls social media and questioned whether Israel should have UN membership. Dozens of countries, UN Special Rapporteur Ahmed Shaheed, and HRC President Federico Villegas condemned these remarks. In a letter to UNHRC President Federico Villegas, Commissioner Navi Pillay refused to condemn Kothari’s remarks, stating his comments “have deliberately been taken out of context…[and] deliberately misquoted.” 
  • In August 2022, ELSC signed a joint statement condemning the decision by the Israeli Ministry to designate six Palestinian NGOs as terrorist organizations. The statement called for the international community to “take effective measures to end all other actions that deny Palestinians their inalienable human rights” and to “their support and increase funding to the organizations and engage with financial institutions to ensure the transfer of funds to the organizations.”
  • In May 2022, ELSC was a signatory on a flagrantly antisemitic report submitted to the UN HRC’s Commission of Inquiry which was established to “investigate” crimes allegedly committed by Israel since April 13, 2021. The submission called to “Recognise and Address Zionist Settler Colonialism and Apartheid as the Root Causes of Israel’s Ongoing Violations.” The submission presented a blatantly false historical account that denied Israel’s right to exist, categorized Israel’s very existence as illegal, and labeled Zionism as a form of racism.
  • In January 2022, ELSC published a press release condemning the decision of the Dutch government to cease funding to the Union of Agricultural Works Committee (UAWC) due to its ties to the PFLP. According to ELSC, “By doing so, the Dutch government neglects its policy of supporting human rights defenders, thus enabling the efforts to repress Palestinian civil society by the Israeli Government and the disinformation groups it works with…it is undisputable that the termination of Dutch funding for UAWC’s projects will have tremendous repercussions on Palestinians. It will encourage Israel’s illegal settlements enterprise and facilitate Israel’s de facto annexation of the Palestinian territory.”
  • In September 2021, ELSC participated in a webinar titled “Resisting the IHRA Definition.” The webinar was timed to coincide with the launching of a campaign titled “No to the IHRA definition,” which “aims to give activists and campaigners the information and tools needed to resist or push back against the adoption of the IHRA definition of antisemitism in various settings across the UK, including within universities and local councils.”
    • The International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism, adopted by more than 30 countries and counting, represents the international consensus definition of antisemitism, as well as how to distinguish between legitimate criticism of Israel and antisemitism. An example of the latter includes denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination, e.g., by claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist endeavor.



  • In 2018, Giovanni Fassina, ELSC coordinator, wrote an article for Al-Marsad on “Israeli Oil Exploration in the Occupied Syrian Golan.”
  • Ingrid Jaradat (PNGO) is a member of ELSC’s steering committee. Jaradat is the former director of BADIL and a major BDS activist. In a July 2013 article on “How to Make International Law Work for Palestinians,” Jaradat rejects “peace diplomacy based on the Oslo framework,” the “so-called land for peace formula,” and existing international law, claiming that they “cover[] up the ongoing Israeli colonization, confiscation and annexation of Palestinian land and oppression of the Palestinian people” and force Palestinians “to recognize the status quo Israel has created in the part of Palestine it conquered in 1948.”
  • Members of ELSC’s Advisory board include:
    • Valentina Azarova is the legal advisor to the Global Legal Action Network (GLAN), an Irish pro-BDS organization. GLAN “led” the “drafting process” of the Irish “Control of Economic Activity (Occupied territories)” bill, which would make it illegal for Irish citizens and residents to import or sell “settlement goods” or to provide or attempt to provide “settlement services.”
    • Liesbeth Zegveld is an attorney and Rights Forum board member. In June 2017, attempted to file a civil lawsuit in a Dutch court against former Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff Benny Gantz and Israel Air Force Commander Amir Eshel, accusing them of war crimes.
    • Fanny Michaela Reisin is the former President of the international League for Human Rights (FIDH). FIDH engages in “lawfare,” supports BDS campaigns, and abuses its reputation as a human rights organization to condemn Israel in a variety of international forums.
    • Karma Nabulsi is a Former Adviser to the PLO.
    • Norman Paech is a Former Member of the German Parliament from the far-left Die Linke party.


  • ELSC partners with Dutch NGOs A Different Jewish Voice (EAJG) and The Public Interest Litigation Project (PILP), “a project by the Dutch section of the International Commission of Jurists (NJCM).”

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