New York, NY, January 11, 2016 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today reiterated its concern over draft Israeli legislation that would require those Israeli non-governmental organizations that receive more than half of their funding from “foreign political entities,” to declare and detail the funding each time they issue a report or meet with a public official.
“The strength of Israeli society internally, as well as its international position, has been its bedrock commitment to democracy and free expression,” said Jonathan A. Greenblatt, ADL CEO. “There is no doubt that many Israelis today feel beleaguered, both by the security situation and the campaign to undermine the Jewish state’s legitimacy. However, efforts to counter such campaigns through the tarring of NGOs and those holding certain political perspectives, threaten to erode Israel’s very democratic character, and could significantly harm Israel’s international legitimacy. We urge Knesset members to carefully consider the negative ramifications of the passage of this legislation.”
In 2011, the League urged the Israeli government to work to modify two similar bills regarding donations from foreign governments to Israeli NGOs, and voiced concern over laws that stifle free expression.