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Background on World Council of Churches, Antisemitism, and BDS Court Case

Today (October 11, 2018), an Israeli court is considering an appeal from Isabel Phiri, a senior official in the World Council of Churches (WCC) who was denied entry into Israel. NGO Monitor is providing the following essential background on WCC and its “flagship project” Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel (EAPPI), which falls under Phiri’s “overall responsibility.”

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Embrace the Middle East

While Embrace the Middle East runs schools and organizes educational programming and other community development initiatives, it promotes an entirely biased and distorted view of the conflict based solely on the Palestinian narrative of victimization and Israeli aggression.

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Caritas Internationalis

Headquartered in Rome, with offices in Geneva and New York, Caritas Internationalis serves as an umbrella organization that coordinates and supports member activities, provides a platform for interaction between the Vatican and member organizations, but allows individual Caritas members to implement activities in their areas of interest and influence.

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Tree of Life

Since 2003, Tree of Life has organized trips to Israel and the West Bank. Participants of the tours meet with members of highly politicized NGOs. Upon completion of the program, the participants return to their home countries where many engage in anti-Israel advocacy, including advocating for BDS campaigns and asking to “stop sending billions of dollars worth of weapons to Israel.”

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Global Network for Rights and Development (GNRD)

In July 2016, a Norwegian court declared the Global Network for Rights and Development bankrupt after another court ordered a NOK 376,000 settlement to a former employee. In September 2018, GNRD founder Loai Deeb was indicted by the Norwegian National Authority for Investigation and Prosecution of Economic and Environmental Crime (ØKOKRIM) for laundering approximately NOK 100 million.

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Counter-terror and soft power: NGO claims to military and legal expertise and Israeli responses

For many years, the network of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) claiming a human rights agenda has consistently sought to delegitimise Israel’s counterterrorism strategy. This phenomenon was prominent during the 2008–2009 and 2014 Gaza wars, when these groups issued hundreds of statements condemning Israel, and in campaigns calling for UN commissions of inquiry (e.g. the Goldstone and Schabas/Davis investigations) into Israeli ‘war crimes’.

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