Britain enjoys the legal apparatus to impose a ban on all goods from illegal Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories, according to a university professor.
Advice from Professor James Crawford published by the Trade Union Congress (TUC) suggests EU and World Trade Organization laws allow the UK to ban the goods on the basis of the legal status of the settlements.
"Consumer pressure has persuaded most supermarkets to take settlement goods off their shelves," TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said.
“But there are parts of the settlement trade that consumer pressure simply cannot reach, such as the wholesale and catering industries, and that’s why we need a total ban.
“The TUC does not support a ban against Israel, but we do support a boycott of goods from Israeli settlements because these are illegal, make life a misery for ordinary Palestinians and are ruining any chance of peace.”
The union is also calling for the UK to impose a ban on financial transactions which directly support the settlements.
Professor Crawford’s opinion also supports the case for the UK acting alone, or with EU partners to place a ban on financial transactions that directly support the illegal settlements.