Movie star Mark Ruffalo promoted a petition demanding PayPal offer its services to Palestinians to his over 8 million Twitter followers that was in part created by an Israeli-registered non-governmental organization (NGO) with ties to groups designated as terror organizations in the U.S. and Israel.
Ruffalo tweeted the petition, titled “PayPal: Stop discriminating against Palestinians,” last week. The petition urges the multinational financial technology company to make its services available to Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
“Friends: Paypal operates in Israel’s illegal settlements—but is refusing to provide service to Palestinians in Gaza and West Bank, in direct violation of UN guidelines,” said Ruffalo on June 6. “Join the international call to Paypal to end its baseless discrimination now.”
But one of the two groups that put out the petition, 7amleh, also known as The Arab Center for the Advancement of Social Media, is linked in various ways with Israeli-designated terror groups that operate as “arms” of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), according to the National Bureau for Counter Terror Financing of Israel. The PFLP is designated as a terrorist group by the U.S. and E.U.
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7amleh, which participates in Meta’s “trusted partner program,” according to its website, launched its “#Paypal4Palestine” campaign in October 2021 with the Israeli-designated terror groups Al-Haq, Jewish Voice for Peace and other NGOs. Meta partners with “expert organizations that represent the voices and experiences of at-risk users” across the world, according to its website.
PFLP, which was designated as a foreign terrorist organization in 1997 by the U.S., has planned numerous attacks against Israel. In 2001, the group assassinated Israeli Minister Rehavam Ze’evi. In 2002, a PFLP suicide bomber killed three Israeli citizens, wounding 25.
Still, 7amleh and its staff members have repeatedly expressed support for PFLP.
For instance, Nadim Nashif, 7amleh’s co-founder and director, tweeted an article in 2014 that called PFLP member Leila Khaled a “resistance icon.” Khaled hijacked a plane in 1969 and attempted to do so again in 1970.
In 2017, Marwa Fatafta, a member of 7amleh’s advisory board, wrote an article calling suspected PFLP terrorist Basel al-A’araj an “intellectual activist” after he was killed by Israeli forces. When he died, PFLP called him “one of the most prominent young Palestinian strugglers” and 7amleh celebrated him as a “prominent youth activist.”
Similarly, in 2020, 7amleh referred to former PFLP leader Ghassan Kanafani as a “prominent figure” born before “Israel” became a state in 1948 and slammed “Google” for listing the former leader as born there.
There appear to be links between 7amleh and Al-Haq and Addameer, which like Al-Haq is an Israeli-designated terror group. Ahmad Qadi, the monitoring and documentation officer at 7amleh per his LinkedIn, also works for Al-Haq as a database management specialist.
Diana Alzeer, the senior advocacy and outreach director at Al-Haq, spoke at 7amleh’s conference in May. Likewise, Al-Haq’s former lawyer Cathrine Abuamsha is now a manager at 7amleh, her LinkedIn shows.
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7amleh and Addameer collaborated on a social media campaign in 2017 called “#APrisonerEveryday” to raise awareness for “Palestinian political prisoners.” Prisoners included in the campaign were Mohammad Jamal Al Natsheh, a leader of the terror group Hamas, Marah Bakir, who in 2015 stabbed a border policeman in Jerusalem and Ayman Kurd, who also stabbed two officers in Jerusalem in 2016.
The petition Ruffalo shared currently has more than 212,000 signatures.
A representative for Ruffalo did not respond to The Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment, nor did Meta, Paypal or 7amleh. Al-Haq and Addameer did not respond.
PayPal previously addressed its position on Palestine in a 2016 statement, noting that the company “appreciate[s] the interest that the Palestinian community has shown in PayPal” and will work in “accordance with applicable regulatory requirements.”