(April 25, 2019 / JNS) Several international funding platforms are severing ties with the BDS organization Samidoun after its purported ties to a Palestinian terrorist group.
According to an email obtained by JNS from the International Legal Forum, PayPal said it would “thoroughly review” Samidoun’s account, and that it will “take further action as appropriate in this case.”
Following similar complaints, Samidoun’s accounts with both Donorbox and Plaid have been removed.
Yifa Segal, director of the International Legal Forum, told JNS that Samidoun is clearly affiliated with the designated terror organization the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP).
“I’m very happy that most of the providers we approached were happy to cooperate and comply with the law. Supplying services to a designated terror organization is a serious crime, and we reserve the right to undertake further legal action against companies that continue supplying financial services to these affiliates,” she said.
The action by the International Legal Forum to target funding sources of Samidoun comes as the group has been involved in a recent high-profile case in Germany regarding a convicted Palestinian terrorist.
On April 1, Rasmea Odeh, a terrorist convicted of a bombing attack that killed two Jewish students in 1969 and who was deported recently from the United States, was escorted out of Germany by the German police. Odeh was invited to Germany as a guest speaker of Samidoun and forced to leave Germany after losing two court proceedings.
According to its website, “Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network is grassroots, unfunded organization. We rely on the support of people like you to make our work possible.”
However, Samidoun is the main advocate for the release of Palestinian prisoners, many with ties with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), which is designated as a terror group by the United States, European Union, Canada and Israel.
Many senior members of Samidoun are also involved in PFLP, including Khaled Barakat, the founder of Samidoun, who has headed foreign delegations for PFLP, as well as his wife, Charlotte Kates, who has been active in the PFLP’s delegations, according to the watchdog group NGO Monitor. The group is also active in organizing anti-Israel events across the United States, and many of its activists are leaders of American pro-BDS organizations.
In February, Israel’s Ministry for Strategic Affairs released a report titled “Terrorists in Suits” that examined 13 international BDS organizations, and found that Hamas and PFLP activists had infiltrated organizations that call for Israeli boycotts, divestment and sanctions.
Among the group’s profiled in the report included Samidoun, which the report said “has a wide network of ties with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine terrorist organization.”