The independent London newspaper

Join us in calling for sanctions on Israel

02 July, 2020

• ISRAEL’S proposed annexation of swathes of the West Bank would be the culmination of years of appropriation of land – through the forced displacement of Palestinians, illegal settlement and the annexation of East Jerusalem.

The international community, including the UK government, has been complicit in this process by systematic failure to hold Israel accountable through meaningful action for systematic violations of international law.

The threat of annexation may prove a rubicon moment. Over 150 parliamentarians have called for sanctions to be imposed if Israel proceeds with annexation this week and the Labour Party has now endorsed a call for a ban on settlement goods.

We welcome this. But we need to be aware of the attempts to prevent Israel being held to account and to silence calls for action.

The UK Board of Deputies issued a statement castigating the Black Lives Matter UK movement as anti-Semitic because of its support for calls for action against Israel via the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions campaign after they tweeted solidarity with the Palestinians as annexation looms.

And when BLM drew attention to how such calls are silenced, it was met with redoubled criticism. As BLM has said, coherent anti-racism must include opposition to Israel’s system of oppression which is justified by reference to racist narratives.

Anyone who doubts this should look to the appointment of Israel’s new ambassador, Tzipi Hotovely, who has supported a group discouraging intermarriage between Jews and non-Jews and said there is a “myth of occupation”, referring to Biblical texts in which God granted the Land of Israel to the Jewish people.

We ask all who stand for the principle that human rights are indivisible to join us in calling for sanctions on Israel.

GEOFF LEE, Treasurer,
HELENA AKSENTIJEVIC, Secretary, Camden Palestine Solidarity Campaign
(all in personal capacity)


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