Mon May 6, 2013 4:36PM
Britain and its European allies help Zionist regime’s settlements in the occupied West Bank sustain and flourish through buying products produced by settlers. The UK government - on the one hand - condemns settlements as illegal as a majority of EU nations do and on the other they continue to buy products made in the occupied Palestinian territories and thus help sustain those illegal settlements. “Settlements are illegal under international law, constitute an obstacle to peace, and threaten to make a two-state solution impossible”, said EU High Representative Catherine Ashton in one of many statements made by the EU and its spokespeople over the years on Sept. 27, 2010 in connection with Middle East peace talks. This position is clear and has been consistently upheld. The West Bank colonies were established in violation of Article 49 of the 1949 Fourth Geneva Convention, intended to protect civilians in time of war, including when they fall under foreign occupation. The EU maintains that the Geneva Convention provisions continue to apply to the territories Israel occupied in 1967, despite the long duration of the continuing occupation. Opposition to the Israeli settlements should, at the very least, mean doing everything possible to discourage the creation of new settlements, and doing nothing that might serve to legitimize and entrench those that already exist. Yet a recent report indicates that the EU states are importing goods from the settlements, and thereby reinforcing them economically. Moreover, these imports far exceed those from the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip-by 15 times. For Israeli settlers living in the occupied territory, this means the EU imports over 100 times more per settler than per Palestinian.” However, there has been a growing international campaign for the boycott of all Israeli products until Zionist regime pulls out of the entire [occupied] West Bank and Gaza Strip [occupied]. The organizations and bodies that produced Trading Away Peace are careful to state, however, when they call for a ban on settlement products, that this “is not a ban or boycott on trade with Israel, which the signatories to this report do not advocate.” Efforts to cut off settlement trade with Europe may be expected to intensify. If they can be replicated elsewhere, the cost of maintaining the settlements might be made so heavy that Israel will have to stop building new settlements and withdraw from the existing ones as part of a comprehensive peace with the Palestinians. MOL/HE