Name of proposer:
Should the Union boycott Israeli goods?
What the idea is about:
Remove Israeli goods (such as sweet peppers and oranges) from the Union co-operative shelves, and prevent other Union food outlets from selling Israeli products.
Why have you proposed it?:
Israeli settlements are illegal under rulings of the International Court of Justice, UN Resolution 446, the Fourth Geneva Convention and, overwhelmingly, the international community, including the EU and the UK.
Gaza, the West Bank and East Jerusalem are all under an illegal occupation by Israel, which profits from exporting goods, including fruits, vegetables and herbs grown in illegal settlements on stolen Palestinian land into the UK.
Most British supermarkets, including the Co-op, now claim to no longer stock goods from illegal settlements. However, they continue to source products from within internationally recognised Israeli borders, from companies that also profit from exporting settlement goods. The sale of products from these companies help to sustain their operations in the settlements.
In supporting companies that also sell illegal settlement goods, our Union is complicit in violations of international law and the colonisation of Palestinian lands.
In a historic move, the National Union of Students (NUS) in the UK has thrown its weight behind campaigns targeting companies complicit in Israel's occupation and breaches of international law. The TUC has also passed a landmark policy to boycott all companies complicit in the illegal occupation. The universities of Edinburgh, Cambridge, Manchester, Kings College London and London School of Economics, amongst others, have all passed motions boycotting Israeli produce.
Archbishop Desmond Tutu said of his trip to Palestine:
'I've been very deeply distressed in my visit to the Holy Land; it reminded me so much of what happened to us black people in South Africa. I have seen the humiliation of the Palestinians at checkpoints and roadblocks, suffering like us when young white police officers prevented us from moving about'.
I believe our union has a moral responsibility to heed the call of the oppressed people, like so many university campuses did against South African apartheid in the eighties.
The Panel voted on this Idea:
Yes 4 No 10
This Idea has gone to Referendum