Organizations Demand Europe Boycotts Israeli Settlement Products
October 30, 2012 – A coalition of 22 non-governmental organizations operating in the occupied Palestinian territories, including the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), Christian Aid UK and Ireland, and Diakonia, called Tuesday on Europe to boycott products made in Israeli settlements.
The report, entitled “Trading Awa
y Peace: How Europe helps sustain illegal Israeli settlements”, is the first to compare available export data from Israeli settlements and Palestinians, highlighting the inconsistency at the heart of EU policy.
The EU states, “settlements are illegal under international law, constitute an obstacle to peace, and threaten to make a two-state solution impossible,” said the report, but continues to provide a primary export market for settlement products. Most EU Member States have failed to ensure products are correctly labeled in stores, leaving consumers unaware of the products’ true origin, contrary to the EU’s own directives.
The European Union imports fifteen times more from Israel’s illegal settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory than from Palestinians themselves, it said.
The report calls on European governments to adopt a range of concrete measures to stop assisting settlement expansion and close the gap between words and practice. At a minimum, the coalition is calling for clear labeling guidelines to ensure European consumers do not unknowingly buy settlement goods.
“Goods from West Bank settlements are produced on the back of house demolitions, land confiscations, and military occupation. Governments need to finally move beyond rhetorical condemnations of settlements and at the very minimum ensure consumers can make informed decisions about these products in shops. This is nothing but abiding by European and international law,” said Souhayr Belhassen President of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH).
Via : Younes Arar
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