Smear Campaign Investigation Statement

Following the truly shocking revelations outlined in a yearlong joint investigation by European Investigative Collaborations with articles published today in NRC, Mediapart and De Spiegel, our organisation would like to call for accountability and immediate action.

As one of the oldest European youth organisations, our credible track record backed by years of partnership and collaboration was completely disregarded by the very institutions which should have protected us. Volunteer-led organisations, live and die by their reputation, this multi-year 5-million-euro campaign aims to destroy our organisation and drive the young people we represent out of public life.

As outlined in the article, this smear campaign led to increased censorship towards our organisation by European institutions notably the European Commission and Council of Europe, including the removal of our representatives from the agendas of events they were due to address and removal from youth advisory bodies with no ability for dialogue provided.

Our organisation was left with very few allies as we became a toxic brand, however, leaders like Commissioner Helena Dalli and director of the EU Fundamental Rights Agency, Michael O’Flaherty, and organisations like the European Youth Forum must be applauded as they were willing to show solidarity and be on the right side of history.

It is deeply concerning when any foreign entity tries to influence our leaders and politics. What separates Europe from the rest of the world is our thriving civil society, this campaign aimed to destroy this, and this is why we call on the European Ombudsman to investigate the impacts of this campaign on the engagement of EU institutions with our organisation.

We categorically refute and condemn any attempts to link our organisation to any political or ideological party, group or movement. We have proven throughout the years that our sole objective is to work for a diverse, cohesive and vibrant Europe.





  1. Find here a full list of the articles:
  2. An exclusive interview of FEMYSO’s president (in Dutch):
  3. FEMYSO (est. 1996) is a network organisation for 31 Muslim youth and student organisations across 21 European countries, and is the leading voice for European Muslim youth, developing and empowering them, and working to build a more diverse, cohesive and vibrant Europe. 

  4. For more information or requests please email