Professor Gerald Steinberg responds to an article published by Brookings Institution regarding exploiting Palestinian children for propaganda.
Throughout 2018, NGO Monitor documented numerous concerns regarding UNICEF-oPt (UNICEF’s branch in Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza) stemming primarily from its relationship with highly partisan non-governmental organizations (NGOs).
UN Secretary-General Report on Children and Armed Conflict: Clear Departure from NGO Propaganda Against Israel
On June 27, 2018, the United Nations Secretary-General (UNSG) published his 2017 report on Children and Armed Conflict. Intensive lobbying by non-governmental organizations (NGOs), led by Human Rights Watch, to include the IDF on the list of “grave violators” of child’s rights (included as an Annex) failed.
The well-being of children is a cornerstone of international human rights as noted in the Vienna Declaration. Unfortunately, the UN agency charged with protecting children is failing to carry out its mandate. The Palestinian branch of UNICEF funds and partners with several NGOs that are closely linked to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine terrorist organization.
B’Tselem’s report “Minors in Jeopardy,” was funded by UNICEF and echoes the claims of Defense for Children International – Palestine, UNICEF, Military Court Watch, and its own 2012 and 2015 reports on the subject. This practice of “copying and pasting” and the financial support provided by UNICEF demonstrate the close coordination between Palestinian, Israeli, and international non-governmental organizations in a concerted effort to falsely accuse the IDF of systematically violating the rights of Palestinian minors in order to impose sanctions against Israel.
In March 2018, the NGO umbrella group known as Watchlist on Children and Armed Conflict (Watchlist) published a Policy Note urging the UN Secretary General to add Israel, Myanmar, and others to a list of “grave violators” of children’s rights. Terror groups, including Hamas and Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), are not mentioned in Watchlist’s publication.
On January 12, 2017, the European Union Representative and the EU Heads of Mission in Jerusalem and Ramallah issued a “statement on the situation regarding Palestinian children arrested, detained and prosecuted by Israeli authorities.” The statement unsubtly implies misconduct and ill-treatment by Israeli authorities – echoing a well-coordinated NGO campaign that accuses Israel of “grave violations” against children in order to advocate for Israel’s isolation – while providing no verifiable evidence.
- Ahed Tamimi
- Children and Armed Conflict (CAAC)
- EU Heads of Mission in Jerusalem and Ramallah
- Fawzi Muhammad Al-Juneidi
UNICEF spearheads a campaign to have Israel included on a UN blacklist of “grave” vio-lators of children’s rights. This political agenda is a primary facet of UNICEF’s activities relating to Israel, completely inconsistent with its mandate of “child protection” and from its guidelines for neutrality and impartiality.