“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)
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 The group’s initiative to raise awareness against Mekorot successfully led to the anti-BDS amendment to be withdrawn from the bill.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.
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.
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.
1.10.2015 Israeli police continue their violent crackdown on Palestinians protesting at Al Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem. The British private security firm G4S has contracts equipping and providing services to the Israeli police and prisons, making G4S complicit in this violence.
In the framework of the programme to re-equip its army, France will take a decision by the end of 2015 on which model of drone it intends to purchase. In this arms race, we are glad to note that at least one Israeli corporation has already been excluded: Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI). However, we are demanding via a petition (1) that the Israeli weapons manufacturer Elbit Systems also be excluded from the bidding.
From the European Coordination of Committees and Associations for Palestine:
73 members of the European Parliament issued a letter to European Union High Representative Federica Mogherini and Jan Robert Smits – Director-General of DG Research and Innovation concerning EU support to Israeli military companies trough Horizon2020.
In an open letter to the Guardian leading intellectuals and artists have called for an arms embargo on Israel: "We call upon the UK government to stop arming Israel and extend all our support to the protesters who are using their voices and efforts towards ending the arms trade. All charges against the 19 people arrested should be dropped as the real crime is producing and exporting deadly weapons that destroy the livelihoods of an entire nation. We collectively demand an immediate arms embargo on Israel. We demand the right to allow the Palestinian populace to live."
London Palestine Action, a Palestinian solidarity network based in London that thrives on creative action against Israeli apartheid, particularly through the usage of BDS campaigns, has organized a peaceful protest to be held on the 6th of July, 2015 at the Elbit factory in Shenstone near Birmingham.
Saturday 20 June 2015, thirty activists of the BDS French campaign (Boycott-Divestment-Sanctions) activists carried out a non-violent protest today at the Paris Air Show, surrounding the stand of the Israeli company Elbit. This company is the principal supplier of killer drones to the Israeli army, which used these weapons during the massacres in the Gaza Strip in 2014.