Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Germany suspends funding for World Vision

According to NGO Monitor, government donors to World Vision include the UK, EU, Australia, US,  Canada and Germany.

The Jerusalem Post reports:
Australia and Germany have suspended funding to the World Vision Evangelical Christian humanitarian aid group in response to Israeli allegations that its Gaza office had siphoned $7.2 million a year to Hamas.

Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) called the allegations “deeply troubling,” and said in a statement on Friday that it was “urgently seeking more information from World Vision and the Israeli authorities. [...]

World Vision announced on Friday that it will not receive funds from the German government because of the allegations Hamas misused funds, according to a report in the Berlin-based Tagesspiegel.

“The 3.6 million euro, which we received from the [German] Federal Development Ministry and [German] Foreign Affairs Ministry for new projects in the region will no longer be provided until the accusations are clarified,” said a spokeswoman for the World Vision.

Volker Beck, the German Green Party MP and head of the German-Israel parliamentary group in the Bundestag, said in a statement: “World Vision massively damages the trust necessary for aid work for the people in Gaza,” adding that “Hamas is a terrorist organization, which should not be financed with tax-payer funds.”

The paper reported that as much as 1.1 million euro from Germany was transferred to World Vision in Gaza since 2010. Israel’s Foreign Ministry said that it welcomed Australia and Germany’s suspension of funds. [...]

Muhammad el-Halabi, World Vision’s manager of operations in Gaza, was arrested by Israel on June 15 while crossing the border into the enclave.

A senior Israeli security official said on Thursday that Halabi, who has run the group’s Gaza operations since 2010, had been under extended surveillance and had confessed to siphoning off some $7.2 million a year to Hamas.

World Vision said it was shocked by the claims, and a Hamas spokesman said the group had no connection with Halabi.
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