- Meta, Facebook’s parent company, provides funding and works closely with pro-Palestine charity 7amleh
- The partnership is one of many launched by Meta with the aim of ‘keeping harmful content off our platforms and helping to prevent risk offline’
- The nonprofit is also a member of Twitter’s Trust and Safety Council, and is a part of Twitter’s ‘Human and Digital Rights Protection group’
- A new report claims that 7amleh has links to alleged terror organizations
- Pro-Israel think tank the Zachor Legal Institute claims 7amleh has lionized convicted terrorists and had an alleged holocaust denier as a guest speaker
- Michigan Democrat Representative Rashida Tlaib also spoke at 7amleh’s annual online conference last month on Palestinian online activism
- Zachor founder Marc Greendorfer told DailyMail.com that Facebook and Twitter failed in their due diligence by including 7amleh in their advisory groups
- A spokesperson for 7amleh said the report was no different to the many ‘smear campaigns from extremist, far-right and anti-Palestinian organizations’
Meta, Facebook’s parent company, provides funding and works closely with pro-Palestine charity 7amleh.
The partnership is one of many launched by Meta with the aim of ‘keeping harmful content off our platforms and helping to prevent risk offline’, and allows 7amleh to have a say in Facebook’s policies.
But pro-Israel think tank the Zachor Legal Institute claims in a new report that 7amleh has ties with alleged terrorist groups and even shared staff with them, has lionized convicted terrorists, and had an alleged holocaust denier as a guest speaker at its conference.
‘A terror-supporting, terror-linked NGO, which is tasked with influencing Meta’s algorithm, policies and community guidelines (and receives funding to that end), is actively trying to impact Meta in a way that negatively affects Jews,’ the report says.
‘7amleh has ties to Palestinian terrorist groups and has expressed support for terrorism, which makes its ‘Trusted Partner’ status with Meta all the more troubling.’
A spokesperson for 7amleh told DailyMail.com the report was no different to the many ‘smear campaigns from extremist, far-right and anti-Palestinian organizations’ that it faces and that it will continue working for ‘a fair, safe and just digital space’
The Israel-based nonprofit, whose full name is the Arab Center for the Advancement of Social Media, says it promotes digital and human rights of Palestinians.
Israel charity data from Gidestar.org says it has 10 staff and an annual turnover of almost $1million.
Zachor’s report highlights the center’s alleged ties to terrorists – including the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), designated a ‘foreign terrorist organization’ by the US State Department in 1997.
Last year the Israeli government accused Palestinian nonprofit Al-Haq of operating as an ‘arm’ for the PFLP and designated it as a terror group.
One Al-Haq worker, Ahmad Qadi, also works as 7amleh’s Monitoring and Documentation Officer, according to his LinkedIn page.
7amleh’s Local Advocacy Manager Cathrine Abuamsha was a lawyer for Al-Haq until January 2022, according to her LinkedIn.
Earlier this year UN human rights experts criticized Israel’s labeling of Al-Haq and five other charities as terrorist organizations, saying the government failed to provide ‘any public concrete and credible evidence,’ for its accusations.
Zachor’s report claims that 7amleh and its staff have made statements ‘glorifying’ or ‘whitewashing’ terrorists.
Its report says 7amleh co-founder Nadim Nashif called the convicted PFLP airplane hijacker Leila Khaled a ‘resistance icon’.
In 2020 7amleh called PFLP leader Ghassan Kanafani a ‘distinguished Palestinian personality’.
7amleh advisory board member Marwa Fatafta ‘wrote an article lionizing PFLP terrorist Basel al-Araj’ as an ‘intellectual activist’ who was killed in a firefight with Israeli forces, the Zachor report said.
PFLP recruits have been held responsible for the murder of 26 people at Lod Airport in Israel in 1972, a suicide bombing in a crowded Tel Aviv market in 2004, the killing of five members of a family including a 3-month-old baby in 2011, and a 17-year-old killed by their roadside bomb in 2019.
A 7amleh social media campaign highlighted in the Zachor report pushed for solidarity with Palestinian prisoners.
Among those it asked followers to support were senior Hamas leader Mohammad Jamal Natsheh, Ayman Kurd who was jailed for allegedly stabbing two police officers in Jerusalem in 2016, and Marah Bakir, who stabbed a border officer in Jerusalem in 2015.
Michigan Democrat Representative Rashida Tlaib spoke at 7amleh’s annual online conference last month on Palestinian online activism and digital rights.
The conference featured a presentation from an alleged ‘holocaust denier’ Muna Hawwa.
Hawwa, a Palestinian Al Jazeera presenter, was suspended by the TV channel in 2019 over a video she helped create that referred to the death of six million Jews at the hands of the Nazis as ‘a narrative endorsed by the Zionist movement’.
The video, meant to be an informative segment about the holocaust, called Israel ‘the greatest beneficiary from the Holocaust’ and reportedly claimed that World War II remembrance focuses on Jews because the 1940s saw ‘Jewish groups possessing financial resources, media institutions, research centers and academic institutions that were able to highlight the Jewish victims more so [than others].’
Another conference speaker, Diana Alzeer, is a member of Al-Haq, the charity controversially designated by Israel as a terrorist organization.
Zachor’s report sought to raise alarm over 7amleh’s position as a ‘trusted partner’ with Facebook parent Meta, claiming that the charity is an insidious or biased influence on the social media site’s policies.
Meta did not respond to a request for comment.
In its 2021 annual report, 7amleh says it has ‘contribute[d] to the development and evaluation of Facebook policies. This included policies about peaceful protests, focusing on how violence at public protests is moderated.’
The Zachor report said 7amleh also launched an online campaign to influence how Facebook policies deal with antisemitism.
The nonprofit is also a member of Twitter’s Trust and Safety Council, and is a part of Twitter’s ‘Human and Digital Rights Protection group’.
‘The Human and Digital Rights Protection group engages Twitter on priority challenges and policy issues in the realm of human rights, free expression, civil liberties, and defending the digital rights of people on Twitter,’ the social media site says.
Zachor founder and president Marc Greendorfer told DailyMail.com that he believes Facebook and Twitter failed in their due diligence by including 7amleh in their advisory groups.
‘They are essentially whitewashing terrorism and getting funded by Meta to promote their work and to promote the propaganda that they put out,’ he claimed.
Greendorfer said he was concerned that such heavily partisan groups could have a biased effect on moderators ‘fact-checking’ content on social media.
‘Meta and other social media platforms use these groups to fact check. So let’s say that there’s a terrorist attack in Israel and a number of civilians are killed, and there’s posts on Facebook about that.
‘These groups like 7amleh would be allowed to fact-check and essentially spin the reports and the posts in a way favorable to their patrons.
‘Selective news publication will accelerate when these organizations are allowed to act as fact checkers.’
The Zachor Legal Institute describes itself as a ‘think tank and legal advocacy organization’. It has helped launched lawsuits in the US to fight anti-semitism and the ‘boycott, divestment and sanctions’ movement, a pro-Palestine campaign that targets the country’s business interests around the world.
7amleh told DailyMail.com it is ‘a non-profit organization that works to monitor and document digital rights violations against Palestinians, carried out by various perpetrators online.’
‘Like many Palestinian and Israeli human rights organizations, we are targeted by smear campaigns from extremist, far-right and anti-Palestinian organizations who work systematically to silence Palestinian voices and prevent Palestinians from having the right to freedom of expression,’ director Nadim Nashif said.
‘This latest report is no different, and relies on flimsy and discredited information. Therefore, 7amleh will continue to work with its allies and partners for a fair, safe and just digital space.
‘For a long time, our research has shown that social media companies censor Palestinian content through their biased content moderation policies. This has led to the silencing of Palestinian content, and prevented Palestinians from documenting the human rights violations that they are exposed to.
‘This came as a result of systematic extreme right-wing Israeli efforts to silence Palestinians in online spaces, and as a continuation of coordinated campaigns to dehumanize Palestinians and shrink spaces for freedom of expression.
‘Biased social media content moderation policies allow extreme incitement and hate speech from Israelis to stay online, which leads to real-world harm and increases the violence against the Palestinian community, putting Palestinian lives at risk.
‘Therefore, our work focuses on protecting Palestinian digital rights, in particular the right to freedom of speech on online platforms, which is often denied to Palestinians who speak up about the human rights violations they face in their daily lives under Israeli occupation.’