To mark International Human Rights Day, they addressed the exploitation and abuse of human rights, particularly with regard to NGO’s and the use of Lawfare against Israel.

 Deputy FM Ayalon holds press conference with NGO Monitor


(l. to r.) Prof. Gerald Steinberg, Deputy FM Danny Ayalon and Ms. Anne Herzberg

(Communicated by the Bureau of Deputy Foreign Minister Ayalon)

To mark International Human Rights Day, Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon held a press conference with Prof. Gerald Steinberg and Anne Herzberg of NGO Monitor on the exploitation and abuse of human rights, particularly with regard to NGO’s and the use of Lawfare against Israel on Thursday, December 9, 2010.

At the event, NGO Monitor, an independent Jerusalem-based research institution, presented its updated monograph NGO Lawfare – Exploitation of Courts in the Arab-Israeli Conflict to the Deputy Foreign Minister. Lawfare has been described as a strategy of using or misusing law as a substitute for traditional means to achieve military or political objectives.

In his presentation, the Deputy Foreign Minister stated that due to the consistent Palestinian refusal to come to the negotiation table, during 2011 the Palestinian Authority will continue attempts to assault Israel’s legitimacy through tactics like Lawfare and other obstructive unilateral steps, and the global human rights agenda will once again be hijacked and abused for a narrow political agenda.

NGO Monitor’s study details the exploitation of courts by non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in their efforts to use courts to prosecute alleged human rights violations by Israeli officials.  Lawfare also includes groundbreaking research on EU-funding for these cases as well as for NGO lobbying for prosecutions of Israelis at the International Criminal Court.

Deputy Foreign Minister of Israel Danny Ayalon: Human rights organizations have become pawns serving the Palestinian Authority in “this political warfare that is being waged against Israel” and “have been manipulated and used either by terror organizations or other elements to try and strip the right of self-defense from democracies.” States that fund these organizations are responsible for strengthening terrorism and encouraging the Palestinians’ false hope that they can establish a state without negotiations.

On the eve of International Human Rights Day, DFM Ayalon called on the international community and human rights organizations not to forget the abducted Israeli soldier, Gilad Shalit, whose rights have been trampled by Hamas, and to work for his immediate release.