Jun 24, 2011

#BDS: Fighting apartheid on land and sea

"Earlier this month, 100 activists from nine countries gathered in Montpellier, France for the first European Forum Against Agrexco to strengthen the boycott campaign against Israel's largest fresh produce exporter, which exports under the brand Carmel primarily to European markets. Up to 70 per cent of the fruit and vegetables grown in the illegal Israeli settlements in the West Bank are marketed by Agrexco, making it a prime strategic target for BDS.

The Palestinian BDS National Committee's Rafeef Ziadah explains that the campaign includes all three components of BDS: in the first place, the boycott of Agrexco products, but also divestment via suspension of commercial agreements, and sanctions through court actions directed at Agrexco's violations of international law, especially false labelling of produce. According to Stephanie Westbrook, "Its complicity in a broad range of human rights violations, profiting from crops grown on stolen land, irrigated with stolen water and worked with child labour also provides the campaign with ample opportunities to reach out beyond the Palestine solidarity networks to find allies in other social justice movements."

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