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Right-wing Israeli Group Elad Received Millions From Shadowy Private Donors

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The right-wing Israeli organization Elad received millions of dollars in donations from companies based in global tax shelters. Image by Uri Blau. Israel, 2016.

The right-wing organization Elad received donations worth over 450 million shekels ($115 million) between 2006 and 2013, Elad documents filed to Israel’s Registrar of Non-Profit Organizations show.

According to the Haaretz investigation, most of the donations came from companies registered in global tax shelters like the Bahamas, the Virgin Islands and the Seychelles, and it is unclear who stands behind them or controls them.

Some of the companies contribute to other right-wing groups like the Yesha Council of settlers, or are contributors to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Likewise, at least one company is linked to Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich, owner of the Chelsea soccer club.

Other entities that donated to Elad include Keren Hayesod, the Jewish Agency and the Greater Miami Chapter of Friends of the IDF. Another significant overseas donor is Friends of Ir David, which is registered as a nonprofit in New York and thus provides a tax write-off for its American donors. Friends of Ir David provided 122 million shekels ($31 million) over eight years.

But the particularly big money came from a host of foreign companies registered in tax shelters, which makes it very difficult to identify the owners or nature of their businesses.

To read the full story in Haaretz (paywall protected) click here.