135 Palestinian NGOs have refused to sign the 2020 European Union (EU) grant agreement because an amendment stipulates that organizations must refute ties to terrorist groups. The NGOs claim that the terrorist groups are “political parties”. 
Shawan Jabarin, the executive director of Al-Haq told the media outlet The New Arab, “We demanded to include conditions stipulating that we do not have to recognize the criteria listed regarding terror groups”. A letter of protest was later sent to a meeting between EU representatives in the Palestinian Authority and representatives of Palestinian civil society organizations, led by Mustafa Barghouti, secretary-general of the Palestinian National Initiative, and Jabarin.
UK Lawyers for Israel wrote to the EU Commission last year, highlighting the links between the Union of Agricultural Work Committees and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), which is designated as a terrorist organisation by the EU. We requested that the EU cease funding the group while it maintained links to the PFLP. The UAWC had received considerable amounts of EU funds, although the exact amount is unclear as there is no transparency regarding its funding. UKLFI has, over the past two years, disrupted the funding of around 25 financial platforms of 14 different NGOs with links to designated terrorist entities.
The Arab Press reported that the EU’s contract with NGOs worldwide included an annex which stipulated that the grants must not be passed to terrorist organisations. This stipulation had not previously been applied to the Palestinian NGOs, but has now been included.
Caroline Turner, director of UKLFI commented: “We are pleased that the EU is now taking some steps towards preventing the funding of terrorist linked NGOs. It is shocking to learn that they have until now been exempted from anti-terrorist conditions rightly applied to other NGOs around the world. We hope that the EU does not give in again to their outrageous demand.”
UKLFI thanks NGO monitor which has, for many years, highlighted the links between Palestinian NGOs and terrorist entities, and their funding by EU institutions and others.