Independent Media Review Analysis reports: UNICEF cuts ties with philanthropist Lev Leviev because of his support for Jewish construction in Judea and Samaria, but is working with the Saudi Arabian terrorism-allied International Islamic Relief Organization (IIRO).
The United Nations children's charity fund UNICEF has severed its ties with billionaire Lev Leviev of Israel, because of Arab allegations that he funds Jewish construction in Judea and Samaria. The Arab organization Adalah-NY (The Coalition for Justice in the Middle East) boasts on its website that the decision "followed meetings with Adalah-NY, letters from organizations and Palestinian communities advocating a boycott of Leviev’s companies, and a visit by UNICEF officials to Jayyous, one of the Palestinian communities where a Leviev company is building Israeli settlements." The reference is to the town of Matityahu East, on the Green Line separating Judea and Samaria from the rest of Israel.
At the same time, however, Foxnews reports that UNICEF has linked up with a Saudi Arabian charity organization with branches that the US Treasury has designated "terrorist entities." The organization, IIRO, has offices in the Philippines and Indonesia which fund and support terrorist groups that have killed hundreds in East Asia. The Philippine branch was founded by Osama bin Laden's brother-in-law, Muhammad Jamal Khalifah, and has long had ties to Al Qaeda.
In addition, the UN itself has singled out the above two branches for an asset freeze, arms embargo and travel ban on members of the groups. The UN says that the Indonesian and Philippine branches of IIRO are tied to Al Qaeda and the Taliban.
UNICEF: We Seek to be Non-Controversial
Explaining the decision to refuse contributions from Leviev, top UNICEF official Chris de Bono told Reuters that it was UNICEF's policy to have partners who were "as non-controversial as possible."
Regarding IIRO, de Bono said, "UNICEF does not and will not engage with" the two East Asian branches of IIRO, Foxnews reported. But according to Anne Bayefsky, senior editor of watchdog group Eye on the U.N., it is far from clear that "an organization that's headquartered in one country is really disconnected from operations which bear the same name in other countries and are referred to as branches."
In fact, the U.S. Treasury Department says that Abd Al Hamid Sulaiman Al-Mujil, who heads the IIRO's Eastern Province branch, has been directly funding the two terror-tied branches - as well as Al-Qaeda - straight from his office in Saudi Arabia.