Back in May 2018 the BBC News website published a predictably partial report on Israel’s refusal to renew a one-year working visa for ‘Human Rights Watch’ representative Omar Shakir.
Although BBC audiences were told that “HRW insists that neither it nor Mr Shakir promote boycotts of Israel”, as was noted here at the time:
“Apparently the BBC could not be bothered to take a closer look at Omar Shakir’s history of anti-Israel activism – including pro-BDS Tweets.
Obviously too, the BBC has ‘forgotten’ that an anti-Israel campaign at FIFA (which it vigorously promoted at the time) was supported by political NGOs including Human Rights Watch. In fact, Shakir even went so far as to fly to Bahrain a year ago to lobby FIFA officials…”
Petra Marquardt-Bigman has documented what has happened since that BBC report was published.
“…HRW sued to block Shakir’s deportation and appealed the decision not to renew his permit. In mid-April of this year, the Jerusalem District Court rejected the appeal and ordered Shakir to leave by May 1st, citing his ongoing support of boycotts of Israel. However, HRW once again appealed the decision, which is now before Israel’s Supreme Court…”
On July 25th Israel’s High Court will be hearing Shakir’s appeal. Seeing as ‘Human Rights Watch’ is currently trying to create media ‘buzz’ around the case (apparently including a press conference on that day) and given that it is one of the political NGOs most frequently – and uncritically – quoted and promoted by the BBC, it is quite likely that BBC audiences will see coverage of that story.
NGO Monitor has compiled a useful resource on the background to the case which – if the BBC’s previous article is anything to go by – is likely to be under-reported in its potential coverage.