According to a report in the newspaper WELT AM SONNTAG, the Israeli government is concerned about the EU Commission’s decision to certify the association Islamic Relief Germany (IRD) as a “humanitarian partner for the period from 2021 to 2027”.
Islamic Relief Worldwide (IRW) has been classified as a terrorist organisation in Israel, including its main branches, because it is part of Hamas’ financing apparatus, a spokeswoman for the Israeli Foreign Ministry told WELT AM SONNTAG. “The IRW transferred millions of dollars to Hamas, an EU-recognised terrorist organisation directly responsible for the murder of Israelis, and helped Hamas establish its infrastructure and build its power,” the spokeswoman said.
According to the 2019 annual report, Islamic Relief Germany paid almost twelve million euros to the parent organisation at the time. The German government accuses IRD of having “significant personal connections to the Muslim Brotherhood or organisations close to it”. The United Arab Emirates classified Islamic Relief Worldwide as part of the Muslim Brotherhood in 2014.
A spokesperson for the Muslim Relief and Works Agency said that it had no links to Hamas. IRW has taken legal action in Israel against this false and reputationally damaging claim. “This is an unjustified attack on vital humanitarian aid,” the spokesperson continued. “We reject all forms of radicalism, extremism and violence because our organisation is based in Islam and charity to our fellow human beings in need,” said IRD Executive Director Tarek Abdelalem.
The budget of the European Commission’s current partnership with Islamic Relief Germany is pending. In 2019, 712,000 euros had been paid by the EU Commission to Islamic Relief Germany for projects in the field of earthquake and flood disaster relief.