French media is reporting that in 2016, the Forum of European Muslim Youth and Student Organizations (FEMYSO) asked Qatar Charity for millions of euros to fund its Brussels headquarters. According to the Le Point article:
October 4, 2022 Le Point was also able to consult emails exchanged in 2016 between Femyso and representatives of the Qatar Charity organization. The representatives of Qatar Charity are […] approached by FEMYSO to obtain the 2.25 million euros missing from the project […]. [Translated from French original using Google.]
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According to the article, FEMYSO said that 6.75 million of the project totaling 9 million euros, had already been provided by the Islamic Development Bank, a Saudi banking institution that has funded several projects of the Global Muslim Brotherhood (GMB). According to Le Point, FEMYSO also proposed setting up an Islamic trust (waqf) to facilitate continuous rent payments. Questioned by Le Point, FEMYSO said that it had never received funding from Qatar Charity or its subsidiaries.
Although Qatar Charity is ostensibly an independent charity, a 2020 book authored by two French journalists refers to it as the “religious soft power of Doha.” In 2015, Qatari media reported that the charity had launched an initiative to “serve Islamic projects worldwide” and that the project operated in more than 50 countries with the founding of Islamic centers in countries such as France, Germany, Australia, Ukraine, Bosnia, Albania, and Italy.
Le Point further reports that in their exchanges with the charity, FEMYSO officers emphasized that their organization sought to protect the Islamic identity of young European Muslims. This contrasts with claims made by FEMYSO to the European public that it chiefly seeks to protect human rights and promote tolerance and cohesion among European societies.
A July 2022 Global Influence Operations Report (GIOR) report on European government funding of the GMB detailed how several European Commission departments granted FEMYSO more than €288,000 over ten years for various community projects. In September 2022, the GIOR reported that the European Commission had said there currently was no further funding for FEMYSO while acknowledging past funding.
FEMYSO is also heavily featured in an August 2022 GIOR report titled “Europe and the Global Muslim Brotherhood Part 2: Lobbying & Political Impacts,” which analyzes GMB lobbying efforts at the executive and legislative bodies of the European Union.