Israeli NGOs as terrorist groups
PLO designates two Israeli NGOs as terrorist entities :official
In apparent retaliation for Israel's similar move, the Palestine Liberation Organization designated two Israeli nongovernmental organizations as terrorist entities on Sunday.
Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz designated six Palestinian groups affiliated with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine as terrorist organizations last week.
Several countries, including Israel, the United States, and the European Union, consider the PFLP to be a terrorist organization.
The Palestinian Authority and international human-rights organizations condemned the move against the groups as "a major escalation of its decades-long crackdown on political activism in the occupied territories," and the United States and the European Union both condemned it.
PLO-affiliated labor unions slapped a similar designation on the Jerusalem-based non-governmental organizations Monitor and Regavim on Sunday, citing their "collaboration with the Shin Bet [security agency] and the government of the occupation."
NGO Monitor is a pro-Israel watchdog organization that analyzes and reports on the output of the international NGO community. Regavim is a right-wing NGO that monitors illegal Palestinian construction in Judea and Samaria's Area C and has taken legal action to stop it.
In a joint statement, the Palestinian groups urged all international institutions and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to cut ties with both of the aforementioned organizations.
While it is unlikely that the PLO's designation will have an impact on the operations of NGO Monitor and Regavim, it reflects Palestinian outrage at Gantz's decision.
"Wait, does this mean we're now eligible for EU funds?" Following the PLO's announcement, NGO Monitor joked in a tweet, alluding to the fact that the groups recently outlawed by Israel receive funding from a variety of European institutions.
Regavim, for its part, stated it was “proud to be called a ‘terrorist organization’ by the Palestinian Authority.”
“Paying salaries to convicted terrorists who murdered hundreds of men, women, and children is an act of terror. Legal, media and parliamentary action with aim of exposing these terrorist groups and their scheme to illegally seize Israeli lands is civilian activism,” the group added, further pledging to continue with its work.
Itamar Ben-Gvir, leader of the far-right Otzma Yehudit party, said a statement saying, “The ‘Palestinian’ declaration is meaningless. Those who are defined as terrorist organizations are the PA organizations whose goal is to exterminate the State of Israel and the terrorist Palestinian Authority that sees Israel as the enemy. Any declaration they make is ridiculous.”