(November 25, 2019 / JNS) Human Rights Watch’s Israel-Palestine director will be deported under Israel’s anti-BDS law for promoting a boycott of the Jewish state.
Omar Shakir, a U.S. citizen, was ordered to leave the country after Israel’s Supreme Court upheld an expulsion order under a 2017 law that allows Israel to deport foreigners who support the boycott movement aimed at economically isolating Israel, but has also been accused of anti-Semitism and ties with terrorism.
“This has never been about BDS. It’s always been about the Israeli government’s efforts to muzzle Human Rights Watch,” Shakir said in a statement. “But it’s had exactly the opposite effect. The world has seen through this for what it is. It’s an attack on the human-rights movement.”
Nevertheless, a watchdog group said that Shakir has long targeted the Jewish state.
“Shakir’s career, including at HRW, has been devoted to uniquely and intensely targeting Israel. His personal involvement in campaigns concerning Israeli banks, Airbnb and FIFA membership was meant to trigger far-reaching boycotts, divestment and sanctions. Two courts carefully reviewed the evidence we provided and came to the same conclusion,” NGO Monitor said in a statement.
“Now that Shakir has lost, he and HRW have suddenly forgotten the due process and exceptional access that he enjoyed,” it said,
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