Increase in violence against Palestinians intensifies global call for BDS
UK Government moves to block “politically motivated” boycotts
Israel has stepped up its repression of Palestinians over the last month, with the military opening fire on crowds and raiding villages and neighbourhoods. 31 Palestinians have been killed and Palestinians face violence from vigilante groups as well as the Israeli state.
In response a global wave of solidarity actions will take place this weekend calling for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against Israel as a means of pressuring it to end systemic and extreme human rights abuses.
In the UK protests are planned at the Israeli embassy in London, several Scottish cities, Brighton, Bristol, Cardiff and Sheffield. Follow #SolidarityWaveBDS for info.
Crackdown on “politcally motivated” boycotts
Meanwhile the government has announced new rules to prevent “politically motivated” boycotts by local councils, as a growing number of councils debate motions to boycott goods from Israeli settlements.
Alongside settlement products, arms companies are a key target of the BDS movement. The Conservative Party press release which announced the move declared that “the campaign against British defence companies risk harming Britain’s export trade.”
“Central government regards arms company profits to be more important than the rights of local people to have a say in what their councils invest in,” responded Campaign Against the Arms Trade. “Recent polling from Opinium has found that 70% of UK adults oppose arms sales to human rights abusers, and yet hundreds of millions of pounds of public money is put into supporting companies that arm some of the worst dictatorships.”
The BDS Movement website calls on citizens across the world to “take international solidarity with the Palestinian popular resistance to the next level through Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS):
- “Call for a military embargo and other sanctions against Israel at all protests and creative direct actions.
- Maximize the benefit of solidarity protests by calling for BDS campaigns in all fields to further isolate Israel’s regime of occupation and apartheid, as was done to apartheid South Africa.
- Campaign against complicit international companies, such as G4S and HP, and Israeli companies, such as Elbit Systems, that participate in Israel’s infrastructure of oppression.
- Organize events, teach-ins, creative actions and occupations to educate about Palestinian rights through involvement in BDS campaigning.
- Promote your actions using the hashtag #SolidarityWaveBDS.”