Indian movements have called popular movements and organizations from BRICS countries as well as some other guests to Goa in the days ahead of the official summit of the leaders of the BRICS, the alliance between Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. Palestine was among the people and struggle to be represented and delegates discussed possible ways forward for more powerful solidarity efforts and reaffirmed their commitment to support of the struggle and the Palestinian call for boycotts, divestment and sanctions.
Monday 26th September 2016, about 20 activists protested against the collaboration of the University of Leuven with Israel. During the official opening of the academic year at KU Leuven protesters lay on the street, just before the procession of professors in gowns was coming. The slogan quoted: 'Professors: don’t wipe your feet on Palestinian human rights! ". The Law Faculty of the University of Leuven is in fact part of the LAW TRAIN project, the EU funded research project to develop and share interrogation techniques with Israeli police. The project is led by the Israeli Bar-Ilan University.
“It is our responsibility to do what is in our reach to support justice in Palestine.” With these sound and simple words Jesús Manuel Sánchez Antuña, the mayor of Langreo, has reaffirmed the solidarity of the small town in Asturias, in northern Spain. We had visited to thank the local council for its decision to declare the municipality ‘free of Israeli Apartheid’ and not to contract any companies that are involved in Israeli violations of Palestinian human rights and international law.
Nearly 40 European trade unions, water and human rights networks and environmental groups from a dozen countries have written a letter to the European Commission urging withdrawal of patronage from Watec, the Israeli water conference and exhibition to be held for the first time in Europe, September 21-23 in Venice, Italy. (See letter and signatories)
Israeli military companies such as Elbit Systems appear invincible, yet Israel’s arms industry is more vulnerable than it seems. Al-Shabaka guest author Maren Mantovani and Policy Advisor Jamal Juma’ examine both national and global trends and identify avenues for human rights activists to pursue to hold Israel accountable under international law.
In Canada a new campaign has started to target military relations with Israel: activists from the network BDS Quebec have launched efforts to stop cooperation between the Montreal based military company CAE Ltd. and the Israeli military as well as Israeli private military companies, Elbit Systems and Aeronautics Ltd.
The Alliance for Water Justice in Palestine raised awareness about human rights violations perpetrated by the national Israeli water company, Mekorot, by hand delivering an open letter to the Israeli Consul in Boston. Mekorot has been internationally denounced for implementing since its decades ‘water apartheid’ that is essential for Israeli efforts to colonize Palestinian lands and ethnically cleanse it from Palestinian communities. The company was once again in the news recently for shutting off water in many towns throughout Palestine this summer during Ramadan. In the summer temperatures can easily exceed 35 degrees Celsius and cutting water supplies to Palestinian communities is a key component of Israel’s policies to drive people from their lands and communities by making live unbearable and destroying their means of livelihood. The open letter led the group to lobby against an amendment on a bill that would penalize companies taking part in the BDS movement. The group’s initiative to raise awareness against Mekorot successfully led to the anti-BDS amendment to be withdrawn from the bill. More boycott activities is essential for building strength against current efforts in North America and Europe to outlaw BDS.
Under the title “No to the Horizon2020 Law Train project - No to cooperation with Israel’s repressive system!”, on Thursday 24, a large coalition of Portuguese forces has held the official launch of a campaign aimed at ending the participation of the Portuguese ministry of Justice and the police in a joint, EU funded project with Israeli police forces.
Reposting the article by Andrew, 8th June 2016, from War's resisterer international
During her time working as an intern at War Resisters' International, Taya Govreen-Segal, a consceintious objector, delivered a talk to the “Britain and Palestine: Past History and Future Role” conference, held at Sarum College, Salisbury, UK, on 13th February. Below is a transcript, providing detailed analysis of the role of the arms trade in the ongoing occupation of Palestine.
The EU continues to fund Israeli companies and institutions that are directly involved in the maintenance of the Israeli regime of apartheid, colonialism and occupation. ECCP has worked on new research, Stop the Wall prepared new resources, a new campaign targets a shocking EU funded project aimed at unifying methodology of interrogation between Israeli police and European police forces.
As the EU-Israeli research funding programme HORIZON 2020 continues to allocate citizens tax money to big business, civil society keeps pressuring the EU to comply with its own ethical policies and its obligations under international law. Military companies - including Israeli military and security companies - are heavily funded by the EU. This is a direct channel to support the development of new technologies for Israel’s systematic oppression of the Palestinian People. Despite the EU ethics norms require avoidance of dual use, misuse or mission/function creep of the research results, the EU still fails to answer concerns that the new technologies may be used for war crimes.
More than 300 human rights and aid organisations, church groups, trade unions and political parties from across Europe have called on the EU to uphold its legal responsibilities and hold Israel accountable for its violations of international law and to defend the right of individuals and institutions to take part in the Palestinian-led Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement for justice and equality.
As part of the calls for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions on Israel, Palestinian organizations and municipalities urge governments and public institutions to end cooperation with the Israeli state-owned water company Mekorot. This year, movements in Bahia, in the northeast of Brazil, have joined in the struggle against these dirty deals demanding their state water companies end a cooperation agreement signed with Mekorot in 2013.
On the occasion of Palestinian women’s celebration of 8th of March, the International Women’s Day, we the undersigned, Palestinian women organizations, centers and groups, call upon all women and feminists of the world, as well as women’s organizations and collectives, to endorse the BDS Call issued by Palestinian civil society in 2005 and join to the BDS movement to support our struggle for freedom, justice and equality.
In the latest victory at local authorities level, Avilés, located in the region of Asturias in the Spanish state, declared support to BDS (Boicott, Divestiment and Sanctions) Campaign and announced itself as an Israeli Apartheid Free Zone on January 22 of this year (1). Avilés and the other 27 Spanish cities have declared that they do not want to be accomplice to the occupation and Israeli apartheid.
In response to Israel’s ongoing campaign of violence and aggression, a new wave of Palestinian resistance has erupted. We, the undersigned, affirm our solidarity with this mass popular resistance, in all its creativity, vibrancy, and courage. We are inspired by the new generation of fearless Palestinian youth, marching in the footsteps of previous generations, as it asserts its right to self-determination and freedom from settler colonialism and apartheid.
Israeli arms exports take dramatic hit amid growing boycott campaign
The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement has been running highly visible campaigns against military trade with Israel that have seen 12 banks and pension funds exclude Israeli arms company Elbit Systems from their investment portfolio. Israeli owned arms factories have been blockaded, and a growing number of political parties and trade unions have called for an end to military ties with Israel.
The governments of Norway and Turkey have both announced military embargo policies against Israel in recent years.
Mahmoud Nawajaa, general coordinator with the Palestinian BDS National Committee, the largest Palestinian civil society coalition that leads the BDS movement, said:
“Israeli military companies market their products on the basis of their successful use in Israel’s massacres of Palestinian and Lebanese civilians, yet it now seems that growing public awareness of and opposition to Israel’s war crimes are starting to hit Israel’s military exports.”
Also don't miss the new briefing published by the BDS Movement on military cooperation and trade of Israeli weapons, tools of repression against the ongoing Palestinian protests. The military trade is at the heart of Israeli oppression: find out more on the military companies and the complicit international institutions, and on the campaigns that work against these and the military aid to Israel.
Whether the current phase of Israel’s intensified repression and Palestinian popular resistance will evolve into a full-fledged intifada or not, one thing is already evident—a new generation of Palestinians is marching on the footsteps of previous generations, rising up en masse against Israel’s brutal, decades-old regime of occupation, settler colonialism and apartheid.
This briefing marks another step in the effort to stop the EU's funding to Israeli military and security companies. It denounces the financial assistance awarded within the framwork of the Horizon2020 research and development funding scheme of the EU to Elbit Systems and other Israeli military companies through FLYSEC, an airport security project.
Stop the Wall collects here the relevant documentation - including briefings, letters, parliamentary questions and answers from the EU - for the campaign "Stop Supporting Israeli Apartheid - EU Funding For Elbit Systems". The initiative, developed in cooperation with the BNC and ECCP, aims to stop funding to Elbit Systems and other Israeli companies involved in the military-industrial-scientific complex of Israel, a country that systematically commits war crimes and is in ongoing violation of the basic norms of international law and human rights.
Such funding violates not only the growing call for a military embargo on Israel but as well the EU’s obligations under international law.