World Vision Show They Mean Business – Against Israellycool

Following yesterday’s revelations that Mohammad El Halabi – the head of World Vision’s Gaza branch – siphoned off 7.2 million dollars a year from the budget and channeled the funds to Hamas weapons acquisitions, tunnel building, and other preparations for war with Israel, this was World Vision’s response.

4th August 2016

On June 15th, 2016, Mohammad El Halabi, the manager of operations for World Vision in Gaza, was arrested on his way home from routine meetings. On August 4th 2016, after 50 days in Israeli state detention, Mohammad was charged with providing support to Hamas. World Vision was shocked to learn of these charges against Mohammad.

World Vision is a Christian relief, development and advocacy organisation dedicated to working with children, families and communities to overcome poverty and injustice. World Vision serves all people regardless of religion, race, ethnicity or gender. World Vision has been working in Israel/Palestine for over 40 years, striving to give hope to over 500,000 of the most vulnerable children, through education, health, child protection and resilience programs. “We continue to call for a fair, legal process.”

World Vision subscribes to the humanitarian principles of impartiality and neutrality and therefore rejects any involvement in any political, military or terrorist activities and maintains its independence as a humanitarian aid agency committed to serving the poor, especially children. World Vision has detailed procedures and control mechanisms in place to ensure that the funds entrusted to us are spent in accordance with applicable legal requirements and in ways that do not fuel conflict but rather contribute to peace.

World Vision programs in Gaza have been subject to regular internal and independent audits, independent evaluations, and a broad range of internal controls aimed at ensuring that assets reach their intended beneficiaries and are used in compliance with applicable laws and donor requirements. We will carefully review any evidence presented to us and will take appropriate actions based on that evidence. We continue to call for a fair, legal process for Mohammad.

The emphasis of this statement seems to be on a “fair, legal process” for the alleged perpetrator.

And shock from World Vision Australia’s Tim Costello after the Australian government announced it is suspending the provision of funding to World Vision.

World Vision Australia chief executive officer Tim Costello said Mr Halabi has worked with World Vision for 10 years, and that they have “no reason to believe” the allegations against their employee are true.

“I’m profoundly shocked. And they are very explosive allegations,” Mr Costello said.

“We have PricewaterhouseCoopers that audit us each year. We’ve got the 2014 audits, the 2015 audits that just came in a few weeks ago.

But speaking of World Vision Australia, look how they reacted in 2012 to allegations another charity with which World Vision worked had ties to terrorists.

AUSTRALIA’S largest charity has suspended its dealings with a Palestinian aid organisation with alleged links to a proscribed organisation, after being warned it could be held criminally liable for any future terrorist acts carried out by the group.

World Vision Australia last night said it had frozen activities with the Union of Agricultural Work Committees, and asked World Vision’s Jerusalem office to investigate UAWC’s alleged ties to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, a proscribed group under US and Australian law.

Shurat HaDin (the Israel Law Centre) wrote to World Vision and AusAid, the federal government’s foreign aid agency, earlier this week alerting them to UAWC’s ties to the PFLP and the potential for criminal prosecution if they provided them with funds.

AusAid did not respond to the allegations last night. World Vision said it was taking the allegations seriously.

“While there is no evidence yet to support these allegations, World Vision takes the matter extremely seriously,” spokesman Martin Thomas said.

“We have suspended all activities with the UAWC until this investigation is complete.”

This seems like a way stronger response than the current one to allegations against World Vision’s own employee!

Also way harsher is their response to my parody poster using their logo and motto, which I posted as an addition to Brian’s blog post.

wv poster parody

The part blotted out is this.

World Vision contacted my web host with a DMCA takedown notice on the basis of this violating their intellectual property rights, specifically the text and logo. I would argue the use of the logo and motto falls under “fair use”.

Be that as it may, it just goes to show you that World Vision can show they mean business when they want to – like against blogs highlighting the very serious allegations against their Gaza employee.

Much more so than in response to the allegations themselves.


David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media

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