NIF Funded-Sheikh Jarrah Solidarity Movement to Lead Jerusalem March in Support of UDI, and Against NIF Guidelines

JERUSALEM – The Sheikh Jarrah Solidarity Movement (SJSM), in cooperation with “flightilla” activists who are part of the Global BDS movement, tomorrow will hold a demonstration beginning at Jaffa Gate in support of a Palestinian unilateral declaration of independence (UDI) at the UN in September. The UDI represents the opposite path of direct negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority to end the conflict, says Jerusalem-based research institution NGO Monitor.

“The SJSM and other groups are funded via the New Israel Fund, which promotes a two solution and Zionist principles. In contrast, as Palestinian leader Abbas wrote in his New York Times op-ed, unilateral recognition via the UN ‘would pave the way for the internationalization of the conflict’ and for pursuing ‘claims against Israel at the United Nations, human rights treaty bodies and the International Court of Justice.’ This strategy is the antithesis of the direct negotiations necessary for a stable peace between Israel and Palestinians,” says Prof. Gerald Steinberg, president of NGO Monitor.

Yet, SJSM clearly states that this rally is to support “applying to the United Nations for such recognition [of a Palestinian State].” Furthermore, in this event, they are allied with “flightilla activists” who promote the Palestinian narrative and campaign against a two-state solution.

The New Israel Fund (NIF) facilitates funding to SJSM by serving as a conduit for tax deductible donations to SJSM. Under U.S. law, any donations channeled to SJSM in this manner must be approved in advance by the NIF board. Rabbis for Human Rights – another NIF grantee – is also promoting the march on its website.

“By facilitating funding to SJSM, and this demonstration, NIF is not contributing to a two-state solution, but rather the reverse,” adds Steinberg. “In this instance, NIF’s funding does not match its principles.”