***image1***In another major victory for the global ‘Derail Veoloa and Alstom’ campaign and the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement in Australia, the Victorian State Government has chosen not to renew Connex’ (a subsidiary of Veolia) contract as the train system operator in Melbourne Australia. This is no doubt partly due to the efforts of the ‘Dump Connex’ campaign in Australia. Australians for Palestine campaigned for four months and distributed some 100,000 pamphlets encouraging people to join the campaign and petition the government to cut its ties with Connex. This is one of many victories in a campaign that has seen Veolia lose approximately 7 billion dollars in contracts.
Connex, and its parent company Veolia, along with Alstom, another French multinational have been targeted by the global BDS movement because of their involvement in the construction of a light rail system that will connect West Jerusalem to settlements, built on stolen Palestinian land, which serve to sever Jerusalem from the rest of the West Bank. The path of the light rail, which follows the Apartheid Wall, provides important infrastructure to these settlements and plays a key role in sustaining the settlements and ensuring they became a permanent fixture upon Palestinian land. Settlements and the Wall are illegal under international law and any corporation that is involved in their construction is also violating international law and committing war crimes.
Recently Veolia announced that it was withdrawing from the light rail project, but to date there is no confirmation of their withdrawal. Even if they do pull out of this project, Veolia still provides bus transportation between settlements and is involved with waste management in various settlements. The campaign to Derail Veolia and Alsom will continue until both companies comply with international law.
For more information about the Australian campaign to Dump Connex, click here.