PHILADELPHIA – March 1, 2017 – The Middle East Forum asks the public to sign a petition urging the Silicon Valley Community Foundation (SVCF) to stop all funding of extremist groups, including the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and Islamic Relief.
The Forum's Islamist Watch project has uncovered eight donations from SVCF to these groups totaling $330,524. CAIR received five donations totaling $132,933, while Islamic Relief received three donations totaling $197,591.
CAIR and Islamic Relief regularly give platforms to speakers who incite hatred against women, Jews, Christians, and the LGBTQ community.
CAIR was named as an unindicted co-conspirator during the 2008 Holy Land Foundation terrorism financing trial. Since then, the Justice Department has banned outreach with CAIR. In 2014, the United Arab Emirates, a devout Muslim country, designated CAIR a terrorist organization. The Anti-Defamation League accuses CAIR of promoting anti-Jewish sentiment.
Islamic Relief is one of the largest Islamic charities in America and the Western world, reporting a U.S. income of about $110 million in 2014. However, it is a designated terrorist entity both in Israel and the UAE. Banks such as UBS and HSBC have closed Islamic Relief bank accounts over concerns about terrorism financing.
"The SVCF is the country's leading community foundation, with more than $8 billion in assets," said Forum director Gregg Roman. "It enjoys close partnerships with dozens of prominent tech companies. We call on the SVCF to stop funding organizations that promote extremism. When the SVCF funds Islamist groups, it is betraying those moderate Muslims working to free their faith from the grip of extremists, who have learned to shroud their work under the guise of charitable endeavor."
The Middle East Forum promotes American interests through intellectual, activist, and philanthropic efforts.
For immediate release
For more information, contact:
Gregg Roman, Director