SWR ends its collaboration with presenter Helen Fares. She took to Instagram to promote a boycott of Israel-related products.

Presenter Helen Fares Photo: Frédéric Kern/imago

SWR announced on Monday that it was parting ways with presenter Helen Fares. Fares had promoted in a video on her Instagram account the “No, thanks” application, with which users can check if products are on a boycott list against the Israeli economy. He Image reported about it on Sunday. The SWR writes in a press release that Fares has expressed “extreme political positions” several times on his private social media account. The SWR considers that this violates the “duty of neutrality.” Fares moderated the “MixTalk” format, a weekly digital debate format with the motto “Every exchange of opinions counts.”

The original video on Fares' account was only available for 24 hours, but can still be found on X (Twitter). In reports on this topic, the terms “Israeli” and “Jew” are mixed up. Fares only talks about Israel in the video. According to the IRHA definition of anti-Semitism, equating Jews with Israel is considered anti-Semitic.

Fares rejected the accusation that a boycott of Israel was anti-Semitic in a video on his Instagram account on Monday. In the video she complains about “hundreds of threatening messages” after the article Image. In 2019, the Bundestag voted in favor of a resolution condemning as anti-Semitic the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, which calls for a boycott of Israel. It is controversial whether this resolution is legally binding and what legal consequences arise from it.

The “No Thanks” app allows you to scan product barcodes in supermarkets to identify possible connections to the Israeli economy. It is unclear how the list of products and companies is created and how a “connection” to Israel is defined. The application was developed by 25-year-old programmer Ahmad Bashbach. Bashbash grew up in Gaza but now lives in Hungary.

The app went online in early November, but Google removed it from the App Store on November 30 because it was advertised with the following phrase: “Here you can see if the product you are holding prevents the killing of children in Palestine.” ”. compatible or not.” In early December, the app reappeared on the App Store and the incriminating phrase was removed from the description. The Android version of “No Thanks” has more than one million downloads as of April 2024.