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Press ReleaseIsrael/Middle East
ADL Urges American Red Cross to Press IRC to Stop Use of Palestinian Ambulances as a Tool for Attacks Against Israel

New York, NY, November 7, 2000 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) is urging the American Red Cross to use its sway with the agency’s international branch to put an immediate stop to the use of Palestinian ambulances in facilitating acts of violence against Israel.

"Ambulances bearing the symbol of an independent, peaceful medical aid organization should be working to save lives, not facilitating acts of violence against Israel," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director.

According to the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), the Palestinian Red Crescent has allowed its offices and ambulances to serve as cover for Palestinian gunman shooting Israeli soldiers and civilians or to ferry gunmen to the site of skirmishes. Some ambulances are reportedly being used to transport rocks to friction points in Gaza and the West Bank.

The International Red Cross apparently has denied the allegations without reviewing evidence of violations, including news accounts from the frontlines of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and IDF reports. "It is outrageous that the International Red Cross has failed to take these charges seriously," Mr. Foxman said.

In a letter to Bernadine Healy, President and CEO of the American Red Cross, the League noted that while Palestinian ambulances have played a role in attending to the injured in this latest conflict, "The Palestinian Red Crescent is also committing egregious violations of international humanitarian practices.

"Given the American Red Cross’ deserved reputation for promoting the just treatment of Israel within the structure of the International Red Cross, we urge you to look into the IDF information regarding Palestinian Red Crescent’s reprehensible behavior and ensure that the IRC addresses this most troubling development," the letter stated.

ADL is seeking assistance from the American Red Cross to ensure that the incidents are investigated. The IDF has listed five specific incidents of such activities by the Palestinian Red Crescent, and news outlets have reported that Palestinian Red Crescent ambulances have been involved in transporting rocks.

The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.

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