September 21, 2018 | The Jerusalem Post
EXCLUSIVE: PayPal shuts German NGO account with links to Palestinian terrorists
The US online payment service PayPal has closed the account of the Germany-based NGO International Alliance – an organization that sympathizes with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine terrorist organization and supports boycotting Israel.
The Jerusalem Post launched an investigation in early September into the funding stream of International Alliance (Internationalistisches Bündnis). The PayPal payment service for International Alliance had been available for several weeks in September. On Thursday, International Alliance’s PayPal account stated: “This recipient is currently unable to receive money.”
The Post reported on September 1 that German bank Sparkasse Witten shut down the NGO’s account.
While many German banks have terminated accounts with organizations that boycott Israel or support Palestinian terror entities such as Hamas and the PFLP, PayPal’s closure of International Alliance is believed to be the first shut down of an online payment service account in the federal republic for a group involved in BDS and with links to supporters of the PFLP.
Journalist Stefan Laurin wrote in an August Ruhrbarone news website article titled “Sparkasse-Witten: Account for sympathizers of terror” that “International Alliance is an association of different organizations: In addition to the Marxist-Leninist Party of Germany and the Maoist youth organization Young Struggle, the sympathizers of the PFLP belong to this alliance.”
International Alliance wrote on its website: “We are in favor of canceling the PFLP from the politically instrumentalized terror list… We see it as our democratic obligation to condemn the Israeli occupation policies of the brutal massacre in the Gaza Strip by the Israeli military in May of this year.”
The US and the EU classify the PFLP as a terrorist organization.
Laurin wrote in his article that “International Alliance also demonstrated in the middle of August in Bochum for Stefanie Carp, the director of the Ruhrtriennale [a music and cultural festival], and spoke in favor of a boycott of Israel.”
A PayPal representative declined to comment on the status of the account. The Post contacted PayPal in September about the legality of the e account. PayPal has closed the accounts of five pro-BDS organizations in France since January because the groups are in violation of France’s anti-discrimination law.
A spokesman for the alliance, Fritz Ullmann, told the Post he will review the closure of the account.
Numerous Post emails to the NGO were not immediately returned.
As a result of the Post’s exposé articles since 2016, Commerzbank, Deutsche Bank, DAB Bank in Munich, and Postbank have terminated accounts for German NGOs and groups that wage economic warfare against the Jewish state and are linked with sympathizers of the PFLP and Hamas.
The Marxist-Leninist Party of Germany suffered a stinging legal defeat in August when it sought to reverse the decision by Deutsche Bank and Postbank to terminate its accounts. A court in the city of Essen ruled in favor of Deutsche Bank and Postbank. The party is seeking to delist the PFLP as a terrorist organization. The party holds an account with the bank GLS in Bochum.
In 2014, two PFLP operatives murdered four rabbis in a Jerusalem synagogue during morning prayers.
In response to the Cologne-based Bank for Social Economy’s defense of its BDS customer Jewish Voice, the German branch of Keren Hayesod-United Israel Appeal terminated its account in August with the bank and relocated its business to Frankfurt Sparkasse. The CEO of the Bank for Social Economy, Harald Schmitz, is under fire for his advocacy of the BDS group that seeks to destabilize Israel’s economy.
Jewish Voice for a Just Peace in the Middle East called Jewish Voice in the United State its “sister” organization. Jewish Voice in the USA supports the convicted PFLP terrorist Rasmea Odeh. The US deported her last year because she lied about her terrorism conviction when she entered the US. Odeh was responsible for a 1969 bombing that murdered two students, Leon Kanner and Eddie Joffe, in a Jerusalem supermarket.
Benjamin Weinthal is a fellow for the Foundation for Defense of Democracies. Follow Benjamin on Twitter @BenWeinthal.
Follow FDD on Twitter @FDD. FDD is a Washington-based, nonpartisan research institute focusing on national security and foreign policy