The Israeli occupation authorities classified six Palestinian civil society organisations as terrorist organisations, accusing them of diverting donor aid to activists. This move sparked international and human rights criticism.
According to the Israeli Ministry of Defense; these organisations include Al-Haq and Addameer human rights organisation, which have documented human rights violations by both the Israeli occupation authorities and the Western-backed Palestinian Authority, and the other NGOs are the Defense for Children Palestine, the Union of Agricultural Work Committees (UAWC), the Union of Arab Women’s Committees, and the Bisan Center for Research and Development.
Addameer and Defense for Children International rejected the Israeli accusations, describing them as an “attempt to undermine Palestinian civil society.”
The United Nations Human Rights Office in the West Bank said it was “disturbed” by the announcement, adding: “The counter-terrorism law should not be used to restrict legitimate human rights and humanitarian work”, adding that some of the reasons for this step were vague or irrelevant, and that “these classifications are the latest development in a long and disgraceful campaign against these and other organisations, and harm their ability to perform their important work.”
Palestinian organisations condemned the decision of the Israeli authorities, and considered it an explicit declaration to silence voices that expose its crimes against humanity, and its flagrant violations of international and humanitarian law.
The Israeli occupation authorities have been banning dozens of human rights and humanitarian institutions operating in the occupied Palestinian territories, for many years.