Although Palestinian NGO Al-Haq professes a human rights mandate, its board members and officials have made highly disturbing comments, not in keeping with such mandate, regarding violence against Israeli civilians and Palestinian terrorists – including under the slogans of “a right of resistance” or using any means to “oppose the occupation.”
Al-Haq is a leading campaigner for international sanctions against Israel, claiming a human rights mandate. This includes lobbying for International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutions of Israelis, promoting international BDS campaigns, and demanding that the international community take steps whose practical effect would be dismantling Israel.
Al-Haq is also designated as a terrorist entity by Israel due to its ties to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), a US and EU-designated terrorist organization.
Justifications for violence and its glorification by Al-Haq board members and officials – described below – are consistent with the NGO’s broader goal of eliminating Israel.
Glorifying terrorists and justifying violence
Aseel Al-Bajeh – Legal Researcher and Advocacy Officer – Al-Haq
- On June 21, 2021, Al-Bajeh shared a collage of several Palestinians killed in clashes with the IDF and tweeted, “Shedding Palestinian blood & destructing (sic) entire families and futures is Zionism!”
- Among those featured in Al-Bajeh’s post were Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) and Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades mem bers who had perpetrated several shooting attacks inthe West Bank. Al-Bajeh also included photos of two Hamas members who murdered four Israeli civilians, including two minors, and wounded four others in a June 20, 2023 shooting.
- Other Palestinians featured in Al-Bajeh’s tweet were involved in violent riots and shooting attacks on Israeli forces carrying out arrests in Jenin on June 19, 2023.
- On June 8, 2023, Al-Bajeh tweeted, “Do Zionists really think that with punitive home demolitions, they will eradicate our resistance?”
- In that context, the term “resistance” refers to an attack by Islam Faroukh who detonated two bombs at Jerusalem bus stops on November 23, 2023, murdering three Israeli civilians – Tadasa Tashume, Ben Ma’ada, and Arye Shechopek.
- On January 28, 2023, the day after seven Israeli civilians were murdered by a Palestinian gunmen outside of a Jerusalem synagogue, Al-Bajeh tweeted, “More context: why are settlers allowed to be in occupied Jerusalem, a war crime that the world recognises?” – suggesting that the murders were justified. On January 29, 2023, Al-Bajeh tweeted, “Forcing Palestinians to Defend their Right to Resist is Another Complicity with Israel’s Colonialism.”
- On May 12, 2021, during the 2021 Gaza conflict, Al-Bajeh tweeted, “Stop ‘two-sided’ ‘Israel’s right to defend itself’ ‘Palestinian terrorism’ bullshit. All Palestinians are indigenous, colonized and oppressed, even if they raise the arms of resistance & all Zionists are colonizers, even if they carry flowers.”
- On May 13, 2021, Al-Bajeh tweeted, “Let’s talk about this – Declaring Israel an apartheid state by B’tselem without a mention to Palestinian refugees is not sth (sic) to glorify. You are not pro-Palestinian unless you call for the return of Pal refugees & decolonization & freedom in Palestine by all means #FreePalestine” (emphasis added).
- On May 16, 2021, Al-Bajeh posted on Facebook and Twitter, writing, “Resistance in its straightforward meaning is the only legitimate representative of the Palestinian people…”
Ziad Hmaidan – Head of training and capacity building unit at Al-Haq (as of June 2023)
- On December 5, 2022, Hmaidan shared a picture of Omar Mana and wrote, “…May he and they [other deceased Palestinians] together have mercy and eternal life. May we have great patience and solace…The martyr Omar Mana, the martyr of dawn…”
- Mana, referred to by the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) terrorist organization as a “PFLP fighter” who died “while participating in armed clashes with occupation army forces.” According to the IDF spokesperson, during an operation to arrest PFLP members, “suspects threw stones, Molotov cocktails, and explosives at the troops.”
Abdeen was identified as the “head of the local and regional advocacy unit at Al-Haq” in a March 15, 2023 article in Palestinian media, as an Al-Haq legal advisor in a July 2, 2022 Al-Haq publication, and as Al-Haq’s “advocacy officer” in a January 20, 2021 Law for Palestine post describing a webinar in which Abdeen participated.
- On April 7, 2023, Abdeen quoted the Quran, “Go back to them, for we will certainly mobilize against them forces which they can never resist, and we will drive them out from there in disgrace, fully humbled.”
- On January 27, 2023, following the murder of seven Israelis by a Palestinian gunman outside of a Jerusalem synagogue, Abdeen wrote, “The shooting operation which was carried out by the son of the capital by himself in occupied Jerusalem is legitimate by international law, and there is no need for any justification, since it happened on ‘occupied land.’ It is in the world’s capability, instead of shamelessly condemning a legitimate operation according to international law, to put pressure on the Zionist entity to end its colonial occupation and the apartheid regime, which consists a crime against humanity under international law…”
- On January 28, 2023, Abdeen wrote, “What happened in occupied Jerusalem is that a Jerusalemite young man from the sons of the capital, carried out, alone, a resistance action on Palestinian land (occupied Jerusalem), the land of his fathers and forefather, and this action is legitimate according to international humanitarian law and human rights law…What happened in occupied Jerusalem and other cities and villages…is called legitimate resistance under international law. it is a legitimate and effective means to end the colonial occupation and expel the invading occupiers…” (emphasis added)
- On January 27, 2023, Abdeen shared a video clip lauding Ibrahim Al-Nabulsi. Abdeen lauded Al-Nabulsi on several other occasions: On November 21, 2022, Abdeen shared a picture of Al-Nabulsi and wrote, “Look at the hero, he is calm, he guards his land from afar. On November 11, 2022, Abdeen shared a picture of Al-Nabulsi and several posters and wrote, “Look at the hero, look. Look at the one who does not have fear.” One of the posters Abdeen shared read, “Understand the dream well and kill.”
- Al-Nabulsi was a member of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades and part of a cell that carried out multiple shooting attacks against Israelis in 2022. He was killed in a firefight with Israeli forces in August 2022.
- On January 27, 2023, Abdeen wrote, “…Defending the unity of the people, the land, the holy places and the Palestinian soil, resistance in all its forms, and expelling the invading Zionist colonizers is a principal right for peoples according to international law and is a true embodiment of the right of self-determination…”
- On May 15, 2021, during the May 2021 Gaza conflict, Abdeen wrote, “The Palestinian people in Jerusalem, Gaza, the West Bank, the 48’ territories and the diaspora are expecting a great historic victory over the tyrant occupation forces, the arrogance of the settlers and the loathsome apartheid regime at the same time. This, by virtue of its great unity and brave resistance. A victory which draws the features of liberation and self-determination.”
- On March 7, 2021, Abdeen shared a poster featuring Basel Al-Araj and wrote, “Peace be upon you and may your spirit have mercy. You are the brave chivalrous noble knight.”
- Basel Al-Araj, the leader of a terror cell, was killed by Israel police forces on March 6, 2017, when he opened fire at them as they sought to apprehend him near Ramallah.
Shahd Qaddoura – Legal Researcher and Advocacy Officer at Al-Haq
- On September 15, 2021, Qaddoura tweeted, “Mohamad al-Arda, 1 of 4 captured Palestinians who freed themselves from Gilboa prison, told his lawyer that he ate prickly pear (sic) from ‘48. The fruit that witnessed Zionists’ atrocities since Nakba stood still to feed Mohamad. Palestinian resistance & resilience cannot be chained.”
- On September 6, 2021, six Palestinian terrorists escaped Gilboa Prison and were all captured two weeks after the escape. The six were serving sentences for carrying out multiple attacks against Israeli civilians, taking part in terrorist activities, and being senior members of the PIJ and Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades. Al-Arda was sentenced to three life sentences plus 20 years for being a member of the PIJ terror group and planning and carrying out terrorist attacks against Israelis. Al-Arda was a member of a cell that carried out a suicide bombing in 2001, killing three Israelis.
Honaida Ghanim – board member at Al-Haq
- On May 2, 2023, following the death of senior PIJ member Khader Adnan, Ghanim shared a picture of Adnan with his children and wrote, “You have achieved heroism from the impossible and gave struggle a new meaning, oh sheikh.”
- Adnan vocally and publicly supported terrorism against Israelis. For example, in October 2007, Adnan spoke at PIJ’s Al-Quds Brigades rally and said, “O Quds Brigades, strike a blow! O Quds Brigades, shake the earth! Who among you is Hasan Abu Zeid? [a suicide bomber who murdered 5 Israelis] Who among you is the next suicide bomber? Who among you will carry the next explosive belt? Who among you will fire the next bullets? Who among you will have his body parts blown all over?”
Calling for Israel’s destruction
In addition to the justification of violence and glorification of terrorists by Al-Haq board members and officials, several of these individuals have also expressed their desire that Israel will be dismantled:
- On May 14, 2021, during the May 2021 Gaza conflict, Al-Haq legal researcher and advocacy officer Shahd Qaddoura shared a video of violent rioters removing an Israeli flag from a public street light and replacing it with a Palestinian flag, and tweeted, “With everything happening, I find myself coming back to this video. Israel’s fragmentation of the Palestinian people is artificial. Everything artificial has an expiration date. Israel’s settler-colonial regime has an expiration date. Al-Lydd.” (The Arabic name for the city of Lod)
- On June 7, 2021, Al-Haq legal researcher and advocacy officer Aseel Al-Bajeh tweeted, “In a #freepalastine (sic), I would go to Al Lidd airport to see Zionist colonizers board to where they came from.”
- On May 12, 2021, during the 2021 Gaza war, Al-Bajeh shared pictures from Arab violent riots in various cities across Israel and tweeted, “This is hope! The Palestinian people dismantling Israeli colonial fragmentation since 1948 and voicing ONE call against ONE regime. We want to end this settler-colonial failing endeavor in our land! #SavePalestine.”
- According to MEMRI, on November 11, 2021, PA-affiliated Palestine TV aired an interview with Al-Haq board member Dalal Salameh, in which she said, “The notion of [Israel] as a function-performing state established on our land was laid down by the martyred leader Abu Ammar [Yasser Arafat]. According to this notion, [Israel] is a fake state that will come to an end…They want to bring this nation [Palestine] to its knees, but this is a nation of giants, as President [Arafat] said, and Allah willing, it will defy this occupation, this Zionist enterprise, and bring it to its end. (emphases added).
Denying Israel’s right to exist
In May 2022, Al-Haq led a coalition of 90 Palestinian, European, Canadian, and American NGOs – many funded by the EU or European governments – in submitting a document to the UN’s permanent Commission of Inquiry that suffers from a prejudicial mandate and biased commissioners – articulated their absolutist rejection of the notion of a Jewish State.
These NGOs declared:
- “Colonised Palestine refers to the self-determination unit of the Palestinian people and territory of Mandate Palestine (prior to 1948), and which today constitutes the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt) and the territory recognized as the State of Israel in 1948.”
- “The 1948 Territory refers to the territory of the settler-colonial State of Israel, established by the displacement and dispossession of the vast majority (around 80 percent) of the indigenous Palestinian people during the Nakba and the maintenance of a settler colonial and apartheid regime over the Palestinian people since its creation.”
- “The Palestinian people argued that the incorporation of the Balfour Declaration was illegal.”
(For more information, see NGO Monitor’s “Al-Haq’s Antisemitic Submission to the UN’s Permanent COI.”)
Similar language can be found in Al-Haq’s 200-page manifesto, published on November 29, 2022 – marking the 105th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration.
In it, Al-Haq defines Zionism and Israel as fundamentally racist and illegitimate, and extorts the international community to dismantle the Jewish State. In addition, Al-Haq refers to “the Zionist movement’s racialist character” and “Israel’s institutionalised discrimination against the indigenous Palestinian people” is “inherent in the ideology operationalised in the founding institutions of the Zionist settler colonial project in Palestine.”
In attacking those who fail Al-Haq’s purity test of seeking Israel’s complete elimination, the group writes, “According to this approach, apartheid can be ended if the Israeli occupation comes to an end. Thus, the colonisation of Palestinian land by the Zionist movement from the late 19th century onward is legitimised, as is the dispossession of Palestinians and the denial of the right of return of Palestinian refugees since the start of the Nakba.”
(For more information, see NGO Monitor’s “Does Europe Support This? Al-Haq Tells the World to Dismantle Israel.”)
Al-Haq Funders (2018-2023)
|France||€900,000 with 17 other partners. Unclear how much each NGO received||2020-2023|
|Norway||NOK 5.8 million||2019-2021|
|UN OCHA||$178,938 with Al Mezan and the Palestinian Center for Human Rights||2021-2022|
- In a March 5, 2023 Facebook post, Abdeen asserted that he is not a member of Al-Haq. However, reflecting a lack of transparency, Al-Haq does not publish the names of its board members, officials, or employees, nor its financial reports, making it impossible to independently verify this claim.