Women’s Affairs Technical Committee (WATC)
|In their own words||“We endeavor to build women’s framework and mobilize their energies to advocate for the rights of Palestinian women and monitor commitment with such rights in a manner consistent with national references and international covenants.”|
- The Women’s Affairs Technical Committee has not published its annual income or funding amounts since 2013, reflecting a lack of transparency and accountability.
- Donors include Spain, Diakonia (Sweden), Oxfam, and the United Nations.
- In 2020-2023, WATC was an implementing partner on a €500,000 grant from the European Union to “Build capacity, promote tolerance and increase access for activists, political leaders, media institutions and communities around conflict resolution and peacebuilding processes that are strategic and inclusive of currently disenfranchised women and youth.”
- In 2019-2021, WATC received €90,523 from Oxfam Novib for “Advance Gender Justice.”
- In 2018-2021, WATC was an implementing partner of an $17 million project with the NGO Development Center funded by the World Bank (WB) through its International Development Association (IDA). WATC was earmarked $291,647.
- In 2016-2020, Diakonia provided SEK 2 million to WATC.
- In 2016-2017, WATC was an implementing partner on a €586,626 grant from Spain (Agency for International Development Cooperation) to “Fight against Gender Violence in East Jerusalem, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.”
- In June 2017, following WATC inaugurating a youth center for girls named after a terrorist (see more below), the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs decided to suspend cooperation with WATC. Likewise, the Danish Ministry for Foreign Affairs announced that it was freezing all funds until it conducted a thorough review into grantees’ activities, and demanded WATC to repay the money. Similarly, upon learning that the center had been named after a terrorist, the Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs Børge Brende stated that “We have asked for the logo of the Norwegian representation office to be removed from the building immediately, and for the funding that has been allocated to the centre to be repaid.”
- WATC received $674,000 in core funding for 2014-17 from the Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law Secretariat (a joint funding mechanism of Denmark, Sweden, Switzerland, and the Netherlands that closed in 2017).
- WATC rhetoric includes accusations of “apartheid” and “ethnic cleansing,” as well as supporting a Palestinian “right of return.”
- Releases videos regularly on the WATC Youtube Channel glorifying resistance and condemning Israel.
- In July 2021, WATC was a signatory on a letter to the World Health Organization calling for the release of Shatha Odeh, a “well-respected civil society leader both locally and internationally.” Odeh, General Director of the Health Work Committee (HWC), was arrested in July 2021 for her alleged involvement in terror activity.
- In the April 2020 edition of its Voice of Women magazine, WATC published an interview with the wife of the late Palestinian terrorist Khalil al-Wazir (Abu Jihad). Abu Jihad was responsible for the 1978 “Coastal Road massacre” in which 38 Israeli civilians were murdered, including 13 children. During the interview, WATC refers to Abu Jihad as “one of the leaders of the Palestinian revolution, whose last words were ‘no voice rises above the intifada‘” (emphasis added).
- In May 2017, WATC inaugurated a youth center for girls in the town of Burqa, near Nablus. As reported by Palestinian Media Watch, the center is named after Dalal Mughrabi, a terrorist who in 1978 murdered 37 civilians, including 12 children. Funding for this building was provided by Norway, UN Women (United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women), and Palestinian Authority Ministry of Local Government. Upon learning that the center had been named after a terrorist, the Norwegian government and the United Nations issued strong condemnations.
- In September 2014, WATC, alongside MIFTAH, Palestinian Working Woman Society for Development (PWWSD), Oxfam Novib, and Women for Women in Sweden, participated in meetings held at the 27th session of the United Nations Human Rights Council to discuss “war crimes in Gaza and ongoing human rights violations in Occupied Palestine.”
- In November 2012, WATC called for participation in a protest to “raise our voice against the Israeli aggression and demand the trial of war criminals.”
- On March 8, 2016, WATC was a signatory to the “Palestinian Women’s Call for Worldwide Women’s Endorsement of BDS,” which called on women and feminists to join BDS campaigns because the “the Israeli regime of occupation, settler-colonialism and apartheid has for decades denied the Palestinian people our inalienable right to self-determination.”
- On July 19, 2014, WATC published an ad calling for a boycott stating, “I boycott the Israeli malls and the products of the settlements. Do you? For Al-Aqsa. For the Shahidim [Martyrs]. For the prisoners. For Palestine.”
- Signatory to the 2005 “Palestinian Civil Society Call for BDS,” which calls for an end to Israel’s “occupation and colonization of all Arab lands.”
- WATC Director Nadia Abu Nahleh also serves as the “Women Sector Coordinator” for the Palestinian NGO Network (PNGO).
- PNGO is an umbrella organization comprising 142 Palestinian NGO member organizations, many of which support BDS campaigns and have ties to the PFLP terror group. In January 2020, PNGO 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. PNGO claimed that Palestinian terrorist organizations are “political parties.”
- Multiple PNGO officials have ties to terrorist organizations, and at least five PNGO members have ties to EU-designated terror organizations, including through their employees and/or board members who are directly involved in activities and programs.
Lists partners as: Women’s Learning Partnership (WLP),Bank of Palestine, Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID), Diakonia, United Nations, CONEMUND, and the Palestinian Anti-Corruption Commission.
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