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Palestine: Boycotting 'Occupation' Goods.

TEHRAN (FNA)- The decision by the European Union to label products made in Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories is heartening in many ways.

The move follows a growing number of individuals, companies, and organizations that are now collectively boycotting Israeli goods. In addition to this collective global action, several universities and academic centers have already cut off academic, cultural and social relations with their Israeli counterparts.

Some EU countries have issued guidance to consumers on the origins of goods imported from Israelisettlements, as such establishments are deemed illegal by most countries. Following a decision by the European Commission, the body will extend these guidelines to all of its 28 countries.

EU Foreign Policy Chief Federica Mogherini says, "The work is close to being finished but it is still ongoing." The move comes at a time of increasing anger in the EU over Israel's continued settlement construction. In April, 16 EU states sent a letter to Mogherini urging a speedier decision on the labeling process. Among the letter's signatories were the foreign ministers of Italy, Austria, Belgium, Britain, Denmark, Holland, Hungary, Luxembourg, Malta, Slovenia, Spain, Portugal, Finland, France and Sweden.

Israel has expanded its illegal settlement construction in the occupied territories in the past few years in defiance of international calls to end its expansionist policies. Over half a million Israelis live in over 120 illegal settlements built since occupation of the West Bank in 1967.

Those behind the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement describe boycotting Israeli products as an effective and peaceful way to internationally isolate and bring pressure to bear on Tel Aviv to end its Gaza blockade and persistent violations of international law. They say boycotting Israel is the only thing that ends the impunity that is allowing the usurper regime to repeatedly assault Palestinian human rights.

The international movement started in 2005 and has been gaining momentum ever since. It has gained support from trade unions and various political groups all over the world. The movement has also been endorsed by many celebrities and academics with significant victories in Europe.

Even locally, boycotting is taking place. Across the occupied Palestinian lands, there is a noticeable absence of Palestinians in Israeli cafes and shops in an attempt to boycott and damage the regime's economy. In Ramallah and Al-Quds, people have been placing stickers on Israeli products in shops saying, "16% of the profits go to the Israeli army", in an attempt to dissuade customers from buying them.

It is time for leading international organizations not to admit Israel as a member, as it will keep the occupation machine going, especially seeing that it has no intension of ending its barbaric blockade on Gaza.

To help bring change and peace to the Middle East, business companies, universities, organizations and individuals, especially those that advocate human rights and democracy in the West, should support the international campaign to boycott Israeli goods and the companies that support the regime financially. Such a progressive and humane policy can make a world of difference to the lives of millions of Palestinians who are still under brutal occupation of Israel.

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Publication:FARS News Agency
Date:Sep 15, 2015
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