SYDNEY, Australia (JTA) – A pro-Palestinian group staged a tour of shops in Brisbane that stock Israeli goods to expose the “horrors of apartheid.”
Justice for Palestine, Brisbane held its first tour Aug. 25, visiting a number of shops in the Queensland capital’s downtown, including Children of the Revolution, which sells shoes from the Israeli company Naot.
In a video on YouTube, a speaker can be seen telling the small group of boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) supporters outside the shop that Naot has a factory outlet store in the Gush Etzion bloc in the West Bank. “The systematic oppression of the Palestinian people relies on companies such as Naot,” she said.
Sally McGregor, an American podiatrist who founded the Brisbane shop in 1994, said members of the group occupied her store until police were called and eventually moved them on, the newspaper The Australian reported Thursday.
“I am really scared that they will return and damage my business, but I will not be told what I should or should not stock,” she told J-Wire, a local Jewish website.
A letter was given to owners of several stores visited by the group, asking them to “stop importing and selling goods from Israel,” according to the Justice for Palestine website.
Danny Lamm, president of the Executive Council of Australian Jewry, told The Australian: “These mafia-style tactics have no place in contemporary Australia. The shop owner deserves our admiration and every support for refusing to be stood over.”
The group said it plans to hold more “BDS walking tours to expose those that profit from apartheid and occupation.”