Humanitarian aid NGO that occasionally condemns Israel, in contradiction to the organization’s pledge to maintain political independence
Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders) is an international humanitarian aid organization that provides emergency medical assistance to needy people in more than 80 countries. According to its Charter, MSF "offers assistance to populations in distress, to victims of natural or man-made disasters and to victims of armed conflict, without discrimination and irrespective of race, religion, creed or political affiliation." MSF states that its volunteers "undertake to respect their professional code of ethics and to maintain complete independence from all political, economic and religious powers."
On occasion, however, MSF engages in political activities which most notably take the form of attacks on Israel. In a June 2006 report, for instance, the organization states that as a result of Israeli aggression, many people in the northern Gaza Strip “live like recluses and don't even dare trying to go to health-care facilities. … People feel like they are living in an open-air prison. … The situation in the West Bank is no better. The main refugee camp in Nablus is a regular target of [Israeli] incursions. In Hebron, Palestinians are prohibited from traveling on the major roads that run along the settlements, hampering supply operations and access to health care.” The report does not give the context of Palestinian terrorism that prompted Israeli security measures.
In 2002, MSF had a total income of 365.7 million Euros, 81 percent of which derived from private donations. The remainder included donations from the European Community Humanitarian Office (ECHO), the European Union, and the governments of Belgium, Denmark, Luxemburg, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom.