Statement: Jewish Organizations to Blinken: Act to Address Israel's Campaign Targeting Palestinian Civil Society


Together with seven fellow progressive American Jewish organizations, Americans for Peace Now (APN) today sent a letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken, urging the Department of State to take a clear, proactive position regarding Israel's designation of six Palestinian human rights groups as "terrorists organizations."

In the letter, APN and its fellow Jewish groups tell Secretary Blinken, "We are writing to express our deep concern with the latest escalation of the Israeli government's campaign of suppression against Al Haq; Addameer; Defense For Children International-Palestine; Bisan; the Union of Agricultural Work Committees; and the Union of Palestinian Women's Committees –six Palestinian nongovernmental organizations engaged in human rights and civil society work that the Defense Ministry designated as 'terrorist organizations' in October of last year."

Given that nine European states have officially rejected the designation, and that the CIA has reportedly concluded that information Israel shared to substantiate its actions was insufficient, APN and its fellow organizations wrote that Israeli government actions against Palestinian civil society groups might trigger "a broader attempt to suppress not just these organizations but to create a chilling effect pursuant to which other Palestinian and Israeli peace and human rights organizations fear similar reprisals for their work."

The letter, signed by Ameinu, APN, J Street, the New Israel Fund, Partners for Progressive Israel, Reconstructing Judaism, Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association, and T'ruah: The Rabbinic Call for Human Rights, goes on to tell Blinken: "we urge the State Department to clearly state whether the evidence presented by the Israeli government has provided clear, credible, and compelling grounds to substantiate the designation. If it has not, we urge you to publicly denounce these raids and call on the Israeli government to reverse its 'terrorist' determination and cease its ongoing campaign of harassment."

For a full text of the letter, follow this link.