Regulator urged to act over Jewish charities supporting Israeli army

Regulator urged to act over Jewish charities supporting Israeli army

Over 20 civil society organisations and activists have written to the Charity Commission today asking the watchdog what action it has taken against two British registered charities that are supplying combat equipment to the Israeli army, in apparent contravention of Charity Commission regulations.

The complaint comes on the heels of new revelations about the role of one British charity, UKAWIS, in supporting the Israeli military and fresh evidence about another, UK Toremet, undertaking the same activities.

The UK Friends of the Association for the Wellbeing of Israeli soldiers (UKAWIS), a London based organisation that says it is “dedicated to enhancing the well-being of Israeli soldiers.” Its website shows a video of what appears to be a Palestinian throwing a projectile and being blown up immediately afterwards followed by a montage of air strikes on Palestinian targets.

An article published in Byline Times on 8 Jan 2024 quotes the Commission as saying that there is an “active case” against UKAWIS based on a historic complaint about fundraising activities.

Today’s letter states: “Even if that is the case, we struggle to see how providing support to armed forces, especially one that is currently on trial for waging a genocide against an occupied and besieged population in Gaza can be consistent with any bona fide charitable aims.”

The letter also criticise the Commission’s failure to act firmly and decisively on previous complaints which it says has led to a situation whereby charities continue to exploit the financial advantages conferred by charity status to raise money from the public for the pursuit of the military objectives of a foreign force.

This is in reference to a complaint made by IHRC in 2015 regarding the activities of UK Toremet, a UK charity that provides a portal that funnels money to a range of Israel-based organisations, including the Israeli army. The outcome of the Commission’s enquiries confirmed IHRC’s accusation but it appears that the Commission has not taken strong enough action
against UK Toremet and there are still question marks over how effectively it is being scrutinised.

UK Toremet is still being used as a conduit for funds to be distributed to organisations helping soldiers in the Israeli army. One of these orgainsations is One People, set up after 7 October 2023, in its own words “to provide IDF soldiers and rapid response teams with the bulletproof vests, helmets and other lifesaving equipment”. One People’s website openly lists UK Toremet as a partner organisation through which people can donate to One People. One People is also listed by Yad L’Olim, a non-profit organisation in Israel, as a conduit for funds to Israeli soldiers and their units, supplying lone soldiers with helmets, vests, armour, tactical glasses, knee pads and tactical gloves.

Last week IHRC submitted a fresh complaint to the charities watchdog about UK Toremet.

The signatories of today’s letter say that the supply of military equipment to a state army that is currently on trial for genocide in the International Court of Justice barely meets the threshold of what is legal, let alone what can be considered a charitable purpose. Moreover, the “continued fundraising for an army accused of committing a genocide brings the charities involved into disrepute and runs the real risk of tarnishing the reputation of the entire sector as people may view charities as a means to raising funds in the UK to break laws abroad.”

In recent years the Charity Commission has waged a crusade on Muslim organisations accused of infractions of charity regulations. Even when the infractions have been minor or the complaints dubious and/or malicious the Commission has brought down the full weight of its powers on the charities concerned. However, the regulator’s enforcement of regulations against Jewish charities has been toothless in comparison.

The full letter can be read here. [ENDS]

For more information or comment please contact the Press Office on (+44) 208 904 0222  or (+44) 7958 522196 or email


The signatories to the letter are:

Islamic Human Rights Commission
5 Pillars
Ahlulbayt Islamic Mission
Black Activists Rising Against Cuts UK
Black Lives Matter Coalition
CAGE International
Convivencia Alliance
Cordoba Foundation
Hands Off Uhuru – Hands Off Africa
InMinds Human Rights Group
International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network
Jewish Network for Palestine
Jewish Voice for Labour
Muslim Public Affairs Committee UK
Palestinian Forum in Britain
Peacemaker Trust
PSC Scotland
Scotland Against Criminalising Communities
Chris Williamson, former Member of Parliament
Lowkey, Activist and Entertainer
Prof. David Miller, Spinwatch


IHRC is an NGO in Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations.

Islamic Human Rights Commission
PO Box 598
United Kingdom

Telephone: (+44) 20 8904 4222
Twitter: @ihrc

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