For Second Time in a Month, PayPal Shuts Account of French Anti-Israel Boycotters

For the second time in 30 days, PayPal, the global payment service, has shut the account of a group of French anti-Israel boycotters, Benjamin Weinthal reported for The Jerusalem Post on Monday.

Weinthal confirmed that PayPal had shut the account of the pro-Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) group, Jewish French Union for Peace (UJFP) on Monday. UJFP can no longer accept donations through the service.

“Due to customer confidentiality, we cannot comment on the details of any specific PayPal account. However, we would like to stress that PayPal has zero tolerance for the use of our secure payments platform to facilitate illegal activities. We make every effort to comply with laws and regulations around the world,” a PayPal spokesperson told Weinthal. “Compliance with these laws is something we take very seriously. We carefully review questionable activities reported to us and discontinue our relationship with account holders found to violate our policies.”

In France, a law – called the Lellouche Law – bans discrimination based on national origin effectively outlaws the anti-Israel BDS campaign.

PayPal closed the account of France-Palestine Solidarity Association, another pro-BDS group, late last month following a Post inquiry into funding sources for anti-Israel groups.

In 2016 both PayPal and Credit Mutuel shut the account of another anti-Israel group, Campagne BDS France, following an exposé by the Post of its practices.

France’s highest civil court ruled in October 2015 that BDS is a form of hate speech. Dozens of BDS campaigners have been convicted in France of “inciting hate or discrimination.” Some have also been charged under an anti-racism law that bans “the targeting of specific nations for discriminatory treatment.”

There is a growing realization that the motivation of BDS is not justice, but anti-Semitism and discrimination of Israel.

In December 2016, German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s political party, the Christian Democratic Union, passed a resolution stating that the party “declares with this motion its disapproval and rejection of every form of BDS activity and condemns these activities as anti-Semitic.”

Many BDS leaders have publicly opposed the two-state solution and affirmed that the movement seeks Israel’s destruction. Omar Barghouti, the co-founder of the movement, said in 2014 that Palestinians have a right to “resistance by any means, including armed resistance.” Leading activist As’ad Abu Khalil wrote in 2012 that “Justice and freedom for the Palestinians are incompatible with the existence of the state of Israel.”

[Photo: Sagar Savla / WikiCommons]