Left-wing party signs on to settlement products boycott

Hadash calls for an increase in campaign for peace that brings an end to ‘all injustices, oppression and racism’

Stuart Winer is a breaking news editor at The Times of Israel.

Head of the Joint (Arab) List Ayman Odeh leads the party's weekly faction meeting at the Knesset, June 1, 2015. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
Head of the Joint (Arab) List Ayman Odeh leads the party's weekly faction meeting at the Knesset, June 1, 2015. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

A far-left Israeli political party said Tuesday that it would support a boycott of products from West Bank settlements.

Hadash’s announcement came a day after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu demanded that the left-wing Meretz party withdraw a bill calling for products — including those manufactured in settlements — to be labeled with their place of origin.

Hadash, part of the Joint (Arab) List, said in statement that boycott is a justifiable form of protest over the plight of the Palestinian people.

“Hadash welcomes the solidarity with the Palestinian people and its struggle for justice — including the boycott of commercial companies involved in the occupation and the disruption of the Palestinian people’s rights — which is a form of legitimate civilian resistance,” the party said.

The five-seat Hadash party is headed by MK Ayman Odeh, who also leads the Joint List, comprising Hadash, the United Arab List, Balad, and Ta’al.

The statement called on “all the nations of the world,” and on “unions and organizations, to intensify the campaign for a just peace in the region, founded on honoring people’s rights and an end to the all injustices, oppression and racism.”

Hadash’s announcement came amid a European Union push for a policy of labeling West Bank products, and a day after Netanyahu called on Meretz to retract legislation that would mandate the labeling of products manufactured in settlements.

Meretz’s bill, submitted last month and backed by its five Knesset members, calls for a clause to be inserted into the Law for Consumer Protection that would force manufacturers to print on a label “the city or community where the product was made.”

The prime minister slammed the party for the bill and its timing.

“The State of Israel is in the midst of a struggle against efforts to boycott it in international arenas. There is opposition to these efforts from right and from left and an effort to act against the boycott calls,” he said at a Likud faction meeting Monday.

The prime minister was referring to the recent gains by the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, including garnering the support of Britain’s National Union of Students.

Times of Israel staff contributed to this report.

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