New York, NY, November 14, 2011 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) is urging the Israeli government to work to modify two bills currently before the Knesset that would limit donations from foreign governments to Israeli non-governmental organizations.
"While there are valid concerns about foreign government support for non-governmental organizations that some believe take policies at odds with Israel's national security concerns, we are concerned the passage of these bills could negatively impact Israel's vibrant civil society and democratic traditions," said Robert G. Sugarman, ADL National Chair and Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. "We believe there are other ways to ensure full transparency of foreign government support for Israeli NGOs without jeopardizing Israeli's freedom of speech and free expression."
In a letter to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the League today called on the Israeli government to work to ensure that any revised bill presented to the Knesset "take into account Israel's proud history of both safeguarding the security of its people and protecting the precious freedom of expression, which is so deeply rooted in Israel's cherished democratic tradition."
The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.