Sunday, June 09, 2013

Report: EU Funds Radical Groups Undermining Peace in the Middle East

June 9, 2013 
Lenny Ben-David
NGO Monitor

NGO Monitor Report: Secret EU Funding for BDS Leader

Jerusalem - In a new report presented to members of the European Parliament, NGO Monitor details the damaging impact of highly secretive EU funding for radical political advocacy NGOs. According to NGO Monitor, EU funds are going to organizations involved in anti-Israel boycotts and violent demonstrations, which undermine the EU's efforts to secure peace in the Middle East.
The report, Lack of Due Diligence and Transparency in European Union Funding for Radical NGOs, shows how EU-funded NGOs lead the campaigns to demonize Israel through the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) - actions that totally contradict the EU's proclaimed objectives of supporting peace and democratic development.

"The EU's grantees are centrally involved in the 2001 Durban NGO Forum's strategy of political warfare and demonization of Israel. The Coalition of Women for Peace (CWP) and its allies are driving Europe's double standards that single-out Israel through product labeling," stated Prof. Gerald Steinberg, president of NGO Monitor.  "The EU refusal to release any significant documents that shed light on funding decisions reflects a clear violation of transparency principles, and allows for highly irresponsible EC actions."
Examples of misdirected and unsupervised funding are examined in the NGO Monitor report:
Coalition of Women for Peace (CWP) received funding from the European Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR) ("Empowering Women, Building Peace" €247,668) and from the PfP -- Partnership for Peace ("Addressing Fear: Strengthening the Nonviolent Alternative" €355,130).  CWP is a leader in BDS and demonization campaigns, and in sponsoring "Nakba Day" activities that amplify the Palestinian narrative.  CWP's partners in the PfP grant include the Palestinian Popular Struggle Coordination Committee (PSCC), which organized protests that have often turned violent, and Nova, a radical Spanish political NGO.
As the report details, CWP's agenda is also reflected in the participation of its activists in demonstrations carrying flags of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), categorized by the EU as a terrorist organization.  See pictures here (English) and here (Hebrew).

"The study emphasizes the fundamental damage caused by extreme secrecy and the lack of due diligence in the European Commission's decision-making for funding radical NGOs," continued Steinberg. "The facts clearly demonstrate that either the officials involved were unaware of the groups chosen to receive taxpayer funds, or that they chose to promote NGOs that fuel the conflict and promote confrontation, under the façade of 'non-violence.'"

The EU report follows an NGO Monitor report presented in Washington in May on U.S. Government funding for several Middle East political NGOs. On the basis of this publication, members of Congress and U.S. Government officials took action to insure transparency prevent the misallocation of such grants for counterproductive NGOs. This is an important precedent that the EU can follow.
NGO Monitor (, based in Jerusalem, provides information and analysis, promotes accountability, and supports discussion on the activities of NGOs (non-governmental organizations) involved in Middle East politics and human rights affairs.
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