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Europe: Amnesty’s 2017 report is rife with distortions and maintains its longstanding anti-Israel biais

Posted: 25 Feb 2018 08:50 AM PST


Via The Jerusalem Post:
"Amnesty's 2017 report is rife with distortions and maintains the group's longstanding anti-Israel biais," NGO Monitor said.
The recent Amnesty International Report on the state of human rights in 159 countries and territories during 2017 claims Israel is "killing" and "torturing" Palestinian children with impunity.

Its critique of Israel is more extensive and critical than those of known bastions of human rights violations, including Syria, Iraq, and Yemen. (...)

Daniel Laufer, head of foreign media relations for NGO Monitor, said the annual report has long harbored egregious anti-Israel bias.

"Amnesty's 2017 report is rife with distortions and maintains the group's longstanding anti-Israel bias," he said on Thursday. "That the Israel section is longer than those on Syria, Iraq, and Yemen, laughably suggests that there are greater human rights issues in Israel than in those countries."

Among the questionable sections, Laufer notes that the report states that Khalida Jarrar, a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council and board member of the Ramallah-based NGO Addameer Prisioner Support and Human Rights Association, and Addameer staff member Salah Hammouri, remained in administrative detention at the end of the year.

"[However], it fails to mention that these are both members of the PFLP terror organization, Jarrar being a senior official, and Hamouri having been jailed for attempting to assassinate Chief Rabbi Ovadia Yosef," said Laufer.

In response to the section claiming: "Many protesters threw rocks or other projectiles but were posing no threat to the lives of well-protected Israeli soldiers when they were shot," Laufer said: "This thinking both excuses violence, while creating a baseless standard that prevents Israeli forces from protecting themselves and others."
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Netherlands: Palestinian ex-terrorist deported from US invited to speak in Amsterdam

Posted: 25 Feb 2018 08:10 AM PST


Via The Times of Israel:
Right-wing Dutch lawmakers have protested a far-left group's invitation of a Palestinian ex-terrorist who was deported from the United States to speak in the Dutch capital.

Machiel de Graaf and Gidi Markuszower of the Party for Freedom expressed opposition to Rasmea Odeh's planned visit in a query they submitted Thursday to Justice and Security Minister Ferdinand Grapperhaus.

"Do you agree that a convicted terrorist and immigration fraudster has nothing to look for in the Netherlands? If not, why not?" the lawmakers wrote, adding: "Are you prepared to deny her entrance? If not, why?"

In the Netherlands, lawmakers use parliamentary queries to draw the media's attention to issues and direct scrutiny of the actions of the ministers queried, who have up to three weeks to reply.

Odeh was invited to the Netherlands by Anakbayan-Europe, a Filipino communist group, and another fringe left organization called Revolutionary Unity.
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Austria: Far-Right party dragged into fresh anti-semitic songbook row

Posted: 25 Feb 2018 02:30 AM PST


Via Telegraph:
The Austrian government has been rocked by a new scandal after the far-Right Freedom Party (FPÖ) was linked to an anti-Semitic songbook for the second time this year.

Herwig Götschober, a senior FPÖ official, heads a student fraternity that uses a songbook containing the lyric: "Once upon a time, two Jews went to bathe in a river... One drowned, as for the other one we can hope".

It also comes a week after the party issued a statement rejecting Nazism and anti-Semitism and pledged to hold an inquiry to root out Nazi sympathisers among its ranks.

Mr Götschober works in the office of Norbert Hofer, the current transport minister who narrowly failed to be elected president for the FPÖ in 2016.

The fresh controversy comes less than a month after another FPÖ politician was forced to resign over a separate songbook which contained lyrics glorifying the Holocaust.

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Netherlands: Major poet was a Nazi supporter and antisemite

Posted: 25 Feb 2018 01:28 AM PST


Via Bad News From the Netherlands blog, AD and Trouw (in Dutch)
Lucebert (1987)
Recently the literature expert Wim Hazeu has discovered that one of the most famous post-war Dutch poets Lucebert was a volunteer worker in the German weapons industry. He also wrote letters with an antisemitic content, such as: "Only when all Germanic tribes are united, the Jew will no longer have the opportunity to incite blood against similar blood." He signed letters with "Sieg Heil" and "Heil Hitler".  
He has always denied his Nazi past and received major Dutch literary awards. 

Spain: Lawfare Project threatens suit against Yahoo, Google and Twitter for proliferation of antisemitism

Posted: 25 Feb 2018 01:03 AM PST

Via JNS:
The Lawfare Project threatened legal action against Google, Yahoo and Twitter in Spain for failing to address the proliferation of Holocaust-denial websites and anti-Semitic materials on their platforms, announced Brooke Goldstein, director of the legal think tank and litigation fund. "Unless Google, Yahoo and Twitter take down the anti-Semitic content on their platforms, they will be taken to court in Spain and elsewhere," she said.

Goldstein spent the past week visiting the Spanish Parliament to learn more about legislative initiatives against discrimination based on national origin. She also met with members of the Jewish community in Spain who have been subject to boycotts that restrict relations with companies that import Israeli products or have connections to Israeli citizens.

In the last week, the Lawfare Project has sent cease and desist letters to a number of search engines, including Google and Yahoo, with possible action planned against Twitter.

"Google, Yahoo and Twitter are all hosting anti-Semitic websites and content on their platforms, which is a clear violation of Spanish law," said the Lawfare Project's Spanish counsel, Ignacio Wenley Palacios. "This cannot be allowed to continue. If they do not respond positively to the cease and desist letters sent last week, we will file lawsuits against them."

The Lawfare Project NGO, based in New York, funds legal action around the world to protect civil rights and free speech while challenging discrimination and anti-Semitism.
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