The EU denies that it funds activity either for or against political parties in Israel “whether directly or indirectly.”
By Batya Jerenberg, World Israel News
The European Union is funding a Russian-Israeli NGO with half a million Euro ($550,000) to help support its mission to convince Russian-speakers to revisit their right-wing views on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, Israel Hayom reported Wednesday.
Its donation to the NGO Morashtenu (“Our Heritage – The Charter for Democracy”) began in April 2018 and will continue until 2021 with the goal of “building trust in the two-state solution among a population that has traditionally rejected it.”
According to its website, Morashtenu “stands for fare [sic] solution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict on the basis of “Two states for two nations,” and that “stopping the occupation [is] in best interests of our country.”
It “aims at turning the peace discourse to the dominant one in the Russian community,” holding lectures and arranging meetings between Russian Israelis and Palestinians to expose the traditionally conservative citizens of Russia and the Former Soviet Union to the Palestinian narrative.
The NGO Registrar shows Morashtenu’s address as identical to that of the offices of the Geneva Initiative, said the report.
That organization drew up a peace accord that was fully revealed in 2009 and envisions giving the Palestinians almost all of Judea and Samaria and administrative control over eastern Jerusalem.
Morashtenu is also a member of the Alliance for Middle East Peace, whose official mission is to acquire funding “to expand trust-building interactions between Palestinians and Israelis.”
It rejected the Trump peace plan last week because “any ‘peace effort’ that ignores the rights and agency of one party [the Palestinians] does not meet the basic definition of the term and will be incapable of resolving conflict.”
The EU denied that it was trying to influence Israel’s internal politics.
The EU supports programs under its Peace Building Initiative, “which promote peace and the two-state solution,” it said in a statement.
“The EU does not fund activity either for or against political parties [in Israel], whether directly or indirectly. NGOs in Israel receive EU funding according to the prioritization of our programs, and not on the basis of their political beliefs.”
For its part, Morashtenu reacted in the report by defending the right of the EU to support its work since the American administration was also “intervening” in Israel’s affairs.
“These days, with Netanyahu and Gantz embarking on a U.S. diplomatic campaign to learn about a diplomatic plan proposed by the U.S. president, it cannot be argued that there is an improper intervention by a foreign political entity in Israel,” the group said.
It has been known for years that the EU as a whole, as well as many individual European countries, give hundreds of millions of euro each year to extreme left-wing organizations in Israel, including those that support boycotting the Jewish state.