'Post' exposé leads 15 banks to reject accounts for pro-BDS political party

The MLPD was defined in the report as part of “left-wing extremism” organizations in the state.

July 6, 2019 20:57
2 minute read.
'Post' exposé leads 15 banks to reject accounts for pro-BDS political party

Supporters of the Anti-immigration party Alternative for Germany (AfD) hold German flags during a protest in Berlin, Germany May 27, 2018. (photo credit: REUTERS/HANNIBAL HANSCHKE)

The Jerusalem Post’s ongoing investigative series into financial institutions that provide accounts to Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) groups, extremist anti-Israel organizations, and terrorism entities prompted at least 15 banks in Germany to reject accounts for the pro-BDS Marxist-Leninist Party of Germany (MLPD).

The intelligence agency for Germany’s most populous state of North Rhine-Westphalia stated Thursday that “In this context, the MLPD points to the cancellations of the party’s central state and district accounts by Deutsche Bank and Postbank, and emphasizes that 15 other banks and savings banks have rejected opening party accounts of the MLPD.”

The intelligence agents defined MLPD as part of “left-wing extremism” organizations in the state. Party membership for the pro-BDS MLPD increased from 650 to 750 in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia. The Marxist party has an estimate 2,800 members across Germany. BDS seeks to impose economic and political sanctions on Israel.

In 2017, the Marxist party announced that Deutsche Bank and Postbank have closed all of its accounts in Germany. The anti-Israel MLPD had been embroiled in an election scandal alleging it campaigned during the federal election with sympathizers of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, an EU and US designated terrorist organization.

The Post uncovered the Deutsche Bank accounts for the MLDP. Postbank is owned by Deutsche Bank. The intelligence document noted that the MLPD announced in January, 2018 that it exceeded its fund-raising goal by collecting €851,760. The intelligence report wrote that the MLPD is listed as a supporter on the website of the German BDS campaign.

A Post query to the MLDP was not immediately returned. It is unclear what the names are of the 15 banks and savings banks that declined to open MLPD accounts. According to the MLPD’s website, the GLS Bank in Bochum still operates an account for the party.

Germany’s domestic intelligence agency — the rough equivalent of Shin Beit — monitors the MLPD because the party is deemed a threat to the state’s constitutional democracy. In May, the German Bundestag classified BDS as an antisemitic campaign.

During Operation Cast Lead starting in 2008 and running into 2009, the MLPD called for “solidarity with the just resistance of the Palestinian people against Israel’s war of aggression and state terrorism.” The party maintains that the PFLP should not be listed as a terrorist organization. The PFLP has murdered scores of Israelis since the 1970’s, including four rabbis in Jerusalem and an Druze Israeli police officer in 2014.

The intelligence agency wrote that the MLPD has a clear connection to the doctrines of the former dictators Josef Stalin in the now-defunct Soviet Union and Mao Zedong from communist China. Zedong is estimated to have murdered 45 million Chinese. Stalin murdered tens of millions, including his opponents and dissidents.

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