Zionist Organization of America president Morton A. Klein and Director of Research and Special Projects Liz Berney, Esq. released the following statement:
For years, the brutal, Arab-Marxist-Leninist terror organization, Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), has been operating a network of front-groups that pose as “human rights” non-governmental organizations (NGOs), but in reality aid and abet the PLFP’s goal of destroying Israel. These NGOs obtain and funnel to the PFLP millions of dollars of foreign funding, using forged documents and fictitious humanitarian projects; provide critical support for PFLP terror activities; and are led by and employ numerous PFLP terror operatives.
Thankfully, last week (October 19), Israel’s Minister of Defense Benny Gantz designated the following six PFLP front-groups as terror organizations: Addameer; Al-Haq; Bisan Center for Research and Development; Defense for Children International – Palestine (DCI-P); Union of Agricultural Work Committees (UAWC); and the Union of Palestinian Women’s Committees (UPWC).
This long-needed, overdue step will help curb terror activities and their financing. The U.S. State Department has properly designated the PFLP as a foreign terrorist organization since 1997. ZOA urges the U.S. to likewise designate these PFLP front groups as foreign terrorist organizations.
Israel’s designations explained that the six “NGOs” (all based in Ramallah) are controlled by PFLP senior leaders; employ many PFLP activists including those who participated in terror activities; are “central sources” of financing and growth for PFLP terrorism; obtain “large sums of money from European countries and international organizations” by deceit – and use these funds to pay Arabs to murder Jews, enlist operatives, and promote PFLP’s terror activities and ideology.
A senior Israel Defense official stated that the evidence against the NGOs is “ironclad” and that there is “unequivocal evidence that includes video footage, photos, payment receipts that tie the said groups to the backing of terror activity.” Israeli Foreign Ministry and Shin Bet representatives are set to travel to the United States to provide additional intelligence as to why the six NGOs were designated as terrorist organizations.
The NGOs’ PFLP terror ties are also well-documented in existing public sources. Israel’s Ministry of Strategic Affairs’ 2019 report (“The Ties Between NGOs Promoting BDS and Terror Organizations”) detailed the PFLP’s intertwinement with phony “human rights” NGOs. The report names PFLP operatives who head the PFLP-linked NGOs, such as PFLP senior operative and convicted terrorist Shawan Jabarin, who is also the General Director of Al-Haq.
NGO-Monitor’s analysis also confirms the six NGOs’ terror links to the PFLP; the PFLP’s own admissions that its NGO links are “a source of great pride and honor”; the PFLP front groups’ receipt of huge sums from European governments, Soros’ foundation and the Rockefeller Brothers Fund; and links from the PFLP’s website to DCI-P, Addameer, UPWC, and HWC’s websites (screenshot).
NGO-Monitor’s individual analyses of PFLP front-groups Addameer, Al Haq, DCI-P, Bisan Center, HWC,UAWC and UPWC also detail these NGOs’ organizational ties to the PFLP and describe numerous officials who are also PFLP senior terror operatives.
In 2020, Dutch Foreign Minister Stef Blok and Development Minister Sigrid Kaag admitted to the Dutch parliament that the Netherlands paid part of the salaries of PFLP terrorists involved in murdering an innocent 17-year-old Jewish girl, Rina Schnerb, and seriously wounding her brother and father in 2019. In 2013-2021, the Netherlands had pledged $20 million to the PFLP-linked UAWC. The Netherlands suspended its payments to UAWC after these revelations – but many other European countries continue to fund PFLP-terror-linked NGOs. (“Netherlands Admits to Paying Terrorists Who Killed 17-Year-Old Israeli,” Jerusalem Post, July 23, 2020.)
Dual PFLP operatives/NGO officials involved in murdering Rina Schnerb and injuring her family include:
- UAWC accountant, Samer Arbid, commanded the PFLP terror cell.
- UAWC Finance and Administration director, Abdul Razeq Farraj, is another PFLP operative who aided the bomb attack.
- UAWC Monitoring and Evaluation Officer, Ubai Aboudi, recruited for the PFLP and was familiar with the terror cell’s weapons and plans. The PFLP-linked Bisan Center also employed Aboudi, after Aboudi’s prison sentence related to Rina Schnerb’s murder ended.
- Addameer vice chairperson Khalida Jarrar headed the PFLP in Judea/Samaria; was “responsible for all the organization’s activities”.
- PFLP-tied Health Work Committees’ (HWC) financial and administrative director Walid Hanatsheh, is also a senior PFLP official, involved in weapons trafficking and numerous terror activities.
In addition, in 2019, Israel uncovered that top NGO employees were part of a 50-person PFLP terror cell.
The PFLP is designated as a terrorist group by the EU, Canada, Australia and Japan (in addition to by Israel and the U.S.). The PFLP’s heinous terror activities have included:
- PFLP rocket attacks from Gaza targeting Israeli civilians, including in2021,2014, and 2005. In 2019, the PFLP proudly announced that it had expanded its rockets’ range.
- Kidnapping two French journalists and a South Korean journalist in Gaza, in 2016.
- Brutally murdering with guns, an ax and meat cleavers five innocent Jewish worshippers (including an American) and a police officer, at an Orthodox Jewish synagogue in Har Nof, in western Jerusalem, in November 2014.
- Breaking into a Jewish home in Itamar, Israel, and brutally murdering the sleeping Fogel family (parents Udi and Ruth and their children Yoav, age 11; Elad, age 4; and 3-month-old Hadas), in 2011.
- Assisting the assassination of Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, in 2005.
- Breaking into a Jewish home in Itamar, Israel, and murdering Rachel Shabo and three of her children (Avishai, age five; Zvika, age 13; and Neria, age 16), and their neighbor Yosef Twito.
- Assassinating Israeli Tourism Minister Rehavam Zeevi in 2001.
- Suicide bombings at bus stations, grocery stores, etc.; car bombings, shooting attacks and mortar strikes in 1996, 2000-2004 and afterwards, including the 2003 Christmas Day bombing (in which four people were killed and over 20 were wounded).
- Abducting and threatening four American journalists in Beirut in 1981 (two from the New York Times, one from the Washington Post and one from Newsweek).
- Storming the OPEC ministers meeting in Vienna, taking 62 hostages, murdering three people, and obtaining a multi-million dollar ransom for releasing remaining hostages, in 1975.
- Shooting and wounding the vice president of Britain’s Zionist Federation, in London in 1974.
- The PFLP threatened more bombings of Jewish-owned establishments in the U.S. and London, and everywhere in the world, and stated that “The enemy camp includes not only Israel but also the Zionist movement, world imperialism led by the United States and reactionary powers bound to imperialism.”
The U.S. thus should do everything possible to end the PFLP’s ability to use its phony “human rights” NGOs to assist the PFLP’s contemptible terror attacks.
Unfortunately, on Friday (October 22), when U.S. State Department spokesperson Ned Price was asked about Israel’s designations, Price generally remarked: “we believe respect for human rights, fundamental freedoms, and a strong civil society are critically important to responsible and responsive governance.” Price’s irrelevant remark missed the point that the PFLP-linked NGOs are not legitimate human rights or civil society groups. Instead, these NGOs aid, abet and carry out anti-Jewish terror. The only human right at stake here is the right of innocent Jewish men, women, children and babies to live and not be murdered by PFLP terrorists.
As Melanie Phillips brilliantly explained, the PFLP-linked NGOs and their supporters and apologists are using “so-called ‘human rights’ . . . to extinguish actual human rights in support of . . . the agenda to destroy the State of Israel. To that end, ‘human rights’ has become in effect a laundromat for terrorism.”
The U.S. State Department spokesperson also stated: “We’ll be engaging our Israeli partners for more information regarding the basis for these designations.” Apparently mistakenly, he also added: “The Israeli Government did not give the U.S. advance warning that they would be designated.”
A senior Israeli defense ministry official reported that Israel in fact gave U.S. officials prior notice of the terrorist designation announcement and intelligence to support the decision.
In any event, ZOA urges the U.S. administration to review the extensive, ironclad information that Israel provided to the U.S. thus far, the information in the public domain, and the additional information that Israeli officials are bringing to Washington – and to join Israel in designating these PFLP front-groups as terrorist organizations.