A statement issued by the Palestinian National Campaign to Reject Conditional Funding
The Imposition of the European Union’s Conditional Funding opens the door for further Zionist-Israeli conditions
On Thursday, 9 July 2020, 22 members of the European Parliament (MEPs), who are in support of Israel sent a letter to the European Commissioner for Neighborhood and Enlargement, to increase the pressure on the EU to further defame and delegitimize Palestinian civil society, in line with the Zionist-Israeli smear campaign. According to the letter, the endorsing MEPs request that the Commissioner to endeavor to include Palestinian organizations and individuals belonging to or sympathetic with alleged terrorist groups on the EU Sanctions Lists. In a separate meeting prior to the delivery of the letter, various MEPs called for closing the loopholes in EU anti-terrorism financing legislation.
It is of no surprise that this letter for the request for more stringent counter terrorism conditions came on the heels of an extensive media campaign carried out by the Israeli Ministry of Planning, and Zionist-Israeli organizations such as NGO Monitor, to escalate the criminalization of the Palestinian struggle and the distortion of its civil society organizations. The MEPs’ letter came as a result of a meeting held on 23 June 2020 between various MEPs, called for by the chair of the EU Parliamentary Israel Allies Caucus and attended by the director of Palestinian Media Watch (PMW), a Zionist-Israeli organization. At this meeting, the imposition on Palestinian organizations of the article and restrictive measures in EU granting contracts to combat terrorism was hailed as an achievement.
However, MEPs also determined that additional measures were necessary. Such measures included the cessation of all EU funding to Palestine, augmenting the EU lists with Palestinian individuals, denying funding to organizations suspected of supporting terrorism, and imposing financial and criminal sanctions on violators. While stressing the need to continue to support organizations that fully comply with the EU’s restrictive measures, the MEPs stressed the need to deny funding to not only entities and groups currently on the EU sanctions lists but also those organizations suspected of having links with terrorist groups. This deceptive wording is an explicit call for the criminalization and isolation of certain organizations and the strengthening of others based on European standards influenced by false Zionist-Israeli allegations.
Further, the MEPs commended the European Commissioner for Neighborhood and Enlargement; first for his decision issued on 19 May 2020 to launch an investigation of the EU funding to Palestinian civil society organizations and government institutions; and second, for instructing the representative of the European Union in Jerusalem that Palestinian organizations will not be exempt from the counter-terrorism clause and application of the restrictive measures within the granting contracts.
As such, the members of the Palestinian National Campaign to Reject Conditional Funding condemns and rejects the letter and related requests of the MEPs and Israel's allies, as they are a part of the Zionist-Israeli smear campaign against Palestinian civil society, and:
- Emphasizes that the transition to this level of attacks targeting Palestinian organizations reflects the extent to which some European groups are complicit with the Zionist-Israeli campaign and the illegality of imposing restrictive measures on Palestine, since it is subject to Israeli colonialism and apartheid.
- Confirms previous predictions and warnings that agreeing to and signing the European counter terrorism conditions would not provide a reprieve from the Zionist-Israeli attacks against Palestinian civil society, but will be used by allies and proponents of Israel (individuals and organizations) to push forth additional unacceptable conditions, and to divide Palestinian civil society according to Israeli and donor-imposed criteria.
- Reiterates the call to Palestinian organizations that did sign the EU contracts to terminate them and return to the Palestinian dialogue to solidify the collective national position away from the individual interests of the organizations.
- Calls on European organizations to reject the imposition and application of the counter terrorism articles and measures on Palestine and the Palestinian people, including its civil society.