Press TV has interviewed Raja Abdulhaq, a Palestinian activist in New York, to discuss the Arab League’s call on its member states to boycott Israeli products.
What follows is a rough transcription of the interview.
Press TV: How important do you think this call is from the Arab League to boycott Israeli products?
Abdulhaq: I think it is very important, but I would like to put things into perspective. The first Arab League call to economically boycott Israel was actually adopted in 1948 by the Arab states, and unfortunately today we have only two Arab states that continue to boycott Israel, who are Syria and Lebanon. Aside from these two countries, almost every single Arab country is not only involved in political ties with Israel but economically active in trades with Israel.
So today’s call or recommendation by the Palestinian affairs committee to Arab states to boycott Israel is really just again revisiting that call that happened more than 60 years ago. So I think it is important to put this into perspective and looking at the context of the Arab states right now when the challenges that we are facing are specifically posed to Arab Spring. Again this is only a recommendation by the Palestinian affairs committee, so Arab states, whose foreign ministers will be meeting in Cairo I think next month in September, this is a recommendation to them and we are not sure yet if whether these countries will actually continue or endorse this recommendation.
Press TV: Do you feel any confidence that the likes of Persian Gulf Arab monarchies like the UAE, where you see many Israeli products in their malls, will ever really reinstate or instate at all a boycott of Israeli products?
Abdulhaq: Absolutely not. I think that it is very clear that most of the [Persian] Gulf countries, specifically UAE and Saudi Arabia, are actively working on not only destroying the Palestinian narrative, not only to strip away the Palestinian cause from its actual context in terms of fighting the colonization and fighting the occupation. It is very important to understand that these countries are taking the lead into destroying the hopes of millions of Arabs throughout the world, into having a better future and having independent states, where the youth and even the older generation can live in dignity aside from just living in security as many of these countries and many of these states are claiming that the Arab Spring is only bringing destruction and chaos to the region.
So I think talking about history, talking about the present, I really do not see and do not anticipate or expect any of these countries to really take the lead onto helping the Palestinian cause or helping the Palestinian people to win over the occupiers. I feel and I strongly think that the majority of these countries, I am talking about the leadership here not the population, are not only against the Palestinian cause but they are actually in favor of the Israeli and American agenda in the region.
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