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Ireland to Boycott Israeli Settlement Goods

14 July 2018

Israel's West Bank settlements are considered illegal under worldwide law and are bitterly opposed by Palestinians. "If some countries within the European Union are willing to continue encouraging Israel's culture of impunity, it is time for individual member-states to take legitimate actions like the one approved by the Seanad", Erekat said in a statement.

"These goods are exported and sold on shelves around the world, including in Ireland, to keep the show on the road".

Ireland's parliament, the Seanad, will vote later on Wednesday on the landmark legislation, which has support from opposition and independent lawmakers.

But how did the Irish, who like the Jewish people have also faced centuries of persecution, end up so sympathetic to the Palestinian cause? Israeli bulldozers are seeking to clear residents from the village and destroy the properties which remain to make way for the extension of a settlement, and on Wednesday [11 June] set up concrete barriers to prevent Palestinians from entering the village to support villagers resisting the clearing.

The Irish Senators voted in favor of the bill, with 25 votes in favor, 20 against and 14 abstentions.

The UK Government has formally objected to the erasure of Khan Al-Ahmar, supporting the position of the United Nations that settlements are illegal under global law, but has been criticised by Labour for offering nothing in the way of concrete actions to back up this objection. "Specifically, they analogize Israel's settlements in the West Bank to the Protestants from Great Britain who settled in Northern Ireland".

The bill does not name Israel but instead refers to an "occupying power" and "illegal settler". Israel should immediately close the embassy in Dublin.

Ireland is often one of Israel's harshest critics with regard to its treatment of Palestinians. Last year, the Irish Parliament passed a symbolic resolution calling on the government to recognize Palestinian statehood.

Before the vote, PLO Executive Committee member Hanan Ashrawi called on "the Irish people in light of our historical relationship to stand up and to reject the importation of any settlement products - because settlements are, after all, a war crime and an ongoing aggression against the Palestinian people and they want you to be complicit in this war crime".

"It's time that Europe reconsider its approach to the boycott strategy".

She said she visited Palestine earlier this year and, highlighting an Israel settlement which led to a Palestinian village losing its water supply to provide water for a chicken farm.

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Israel's Foreign Ministry has held the government accountable for the vote and has summoned Kelly to its offices for a Thursday meeting. With Israel haters there is nothing to debate. "I think education has a big role to play in improving relations between Ireland and Israel".

Ireland to Boycott Israeli Settlement Goods