Jerusalem – 42 Members of Israel’s Knesset Parliament have signed an unusual parliamentary petition calling for the boycott of products from the United Kingdom.This is the response to the recommendation of British government officials that Israeli products made in Judea and Samaria and the Golan Heights be marked, in order to abet those citizens wishing to boycott Israeli products.

In addition to the petition, the Knesset is considering legislation that would mandate similar marking of British products, as long as the British decision remains standing.

The petition, which was secretly organized in recent days, was initiated by Ronit Tirosh, of Kadima and a Member of Knesset (MK), and is signed by former senior Israeli government ministers, chairmen of senior Knesset committees, faction chairmen and regular MKs.

Among the signatories are former Defense Minister Amir Peretz, former Knesset Speaker Dalia Itzik, former General Security Service (GSS) Director Avi Dichter, Coalition Chairman Zeev Elkin, Finance Committee Chairman Moshe Gafni, Knesset Committee Chairman Yariv Levin, Education Committee Chairman Zvulun Orlev, State Audit Committee Chairman Yoel Hasson and former ministers Roni Baron, Meir Shetrit, Eitan Kabel and Gidon Ezra.

The signatories represent eight of the 12 present Knesset factions.

“We express our revulsion toward the decisions recently made in the United Kingdom to mark Israeli products sold within its borders,” the petition states. “We call on the United Kingdom to immediately rescind the decision, which casts a shadow on economic cooperation between the citizens of our countries. We recommend that the Israeli public reconsider using the services of companies from countries making such decisions, so long as their governments’ recommendations remain standing.”

Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin said that he would pass the petition on to the speaker of the British parliament next week.

At the same time, MK Tirosh approached the accountant general in the Israel Finance Ministry and asked that he prevent senior public officials from flying with British Airways as well as other British airlines operating in Israel.

“There are some situations in which one simply must not remain silent,” said MK Tirosh. “Marking Jewish products for the sake of a boycott is simply not the right course for those who seek to develop ties with the Jewish people. If, by recruiting the public, we will be able to encourage the purchase of Israeli-made products, than our loss will be our gain.”

David Bedein can be reached at dbedein@israelbehindthenews.com

Previous articleThe People Who Helped Kill My Mother
Next articleIsrael Not The Cause of Gazans’ Woe
David Bedein is an MSW community organizer and an investigative journalist.   In 1987, Bedein established the Israel Resource News Agency at Beit Agron to accompany foreign journalists in their coverage of Israel, to balance the media lobbies established by the PLO and their allies.   Mr. Bedein has reported for news outlets such as CNN Radio, Makor Rishon, Philadelphia Inquirer, Los Angeles Times, BBC and The Jerusalem Post, For four years, Mr. Bedein acted as the Middle East correspondent for The Philadelphia Bulletin, writing 1,062 articles until the newspaper ceased operation in 2010. Bedein has covered breaking Middle East negotiations in Oslo, Ottawa, Shepherdstown, The Wye Plantation, Annapolis, Geneva, Nicosia, Washington, D.C., London, Bonn, and Vienna. Bedein has overseen investigative studies of the Palestinian Authority, the Expulsion Process from Gush Katif and Samaria, The Peres Center for Peace, Peace Now, The International Center for Economic Cooperation of Yossi Beilin, the ISM, Adalah, and the New Israel Fund.   Since 2005, Bedein has also served as Director of the Center for Near East Policy Research.   A focus of the center's investigations is The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA). In that context, Bedein authored Roadblock to Peace: How the UN Perpetuates the Arab-Israeli Conflict - UNRWA Policies Reconsidered, which caps Bedein's 28 years of investigations of UNRWA. The Center for Near East Policy Research has been instrumental in reaching elected officials, decision makers and journalists, commissioning studies, reports, news stories and films. In 2009, the center began decided to produce short movies, in addition to monographs, to film every aspect of UNRWA education in a clear and cogent fashion.   The center has so far produced seven short documentary pieces n UNRWA which have received international acclaim and recognition, showing how which UNRWA promotes anti-Semitism and incitement to violence in their education'   In sum, Bedein has pioneered The UNRWA Reform Initiative, a strategy which calls for donor nations to insist on reasonable reforms of UNRWA. Bedein and his team of experts provide timely briefings to members to legislative bodies world wide, bringing the results of his investigations to donor nations, while demanding reforms based on transparency, refugee resettlement and the demand that terrorists be removed from the UNRWA schools and UNRWA payroll.   Bedein's work can be found at: www.IsraelBehindTheNews.com and www.cfnepr.com. A new site,unrwa-monitor.com, will be launched very soon.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here