Israel boycott

Vanessa Redgrave slams Israeli film boycott

By Jessica Elgot, October 7, 2009

British actress Vanessa Redgrave has denounced the artists who urged organisers of the Toronto Film Festival to drop a celebration of Tel Aviv.

Ms Redgrave, 72, is an unlikely defender of Israel, she is known as a fierce critic of the country and is a supporter of the Palestinian Liberation Organisation.

The Oscar-winning actress has spoken out in support of the Palestinian cause in the past and said in 2007 that unless Israel totally withdrew from the Palestinian territories “the world will be in terrible, terrible trouble.”

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Anti-Israel protestor cleared of police attack

By Marcus Dysch, October 7, 2009

A founding member of an anti-Israel group has been cleared of attacking a policeman during a protest against Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman.

Deborah Fink, of Jews for Boycotting Israeli Goods (JBIG), was arrested in London in May while demonstrating as Mr Lieberman spoke at an event at the home of JNF chairman Samuel Hayek.

Ms Fink was in a group of around a dozen protestors who were asked to move by police.

When they refused they were moved by officers. She admitted putting up “strong physical resistance” before she was arrested.

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TUC boycott vote prompts anger

By Leon Symons, September 24, 2009

The decision of the Trades Union Congress to support a “targeted, consumer-led” boycott of goods from Israeli settlements in occupied areas has been described as a warning shot.

Communal leaders fear that unions which are avowedly anti-Israel will attempt to implement a much wider boycott next year. They also believe that not enough was done ahead of congress to avert the outcome.

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Jane Fonda responds to Toronto Festival row

By Jessica Elgot, September 7, 2009

Actress Jane Fonda has hit back after a row errupted over her signature on a letter which criticised a celebration of Tel Aviv at the Toronto International film festival.

Writing on her blog, Ms Fonda denied she had any anti-Israeli sentiments, and that she was protesting that fact that a film festival was being used to promote a certain country.

More than 50 film directors, artists and writers, including Ken Loach, Naomi Klein, David Byrne and Danny Glover signed the letter which protests against the new "City to City" celebration at TIFF, which this year will focus on Tel Aviv.

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Row over Toronto Film Festival boycott

By Jessica Elgot, September 4, 2009

More than 50 film directors, artists and writers, including Jane Fonda, Ken Loach, Naomi Klein, David Byrne and Danny Glover have signed a letter which protests against a celebration of Tel Aviv at the Toronto International Film Festival.

The festival, which is in its 34th year, is launching a “City to City” programme this year, which will focus on Tel Aviv and feature 10 Israeli films.

The artists say the spotlight on Tel Aviv would romanticise the country which they call an “apartheid state”, and claim the festival had fallen prey to the Israeli “propaganda machine”.

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Israel rejects harsh response to Norway boycott

September 4, 2009

The Israeli foreign ministry yesterday refrained from harshly criticising Norway’s decision to divest from an Israel company.

In a relatively low key response, the foreign ministry released a statement: “Israel will consider further protest measures in the future.”

Haaretz reported the foreign ministry decided against using stronger language in order to prevent a diplomatic crisis.

The decision was taken after foreign ministry director - general Yossi Gal consulted Israel’s ambassador to Oslo, Michael Eligal, and foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman.

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Fire-fighters call for TUC Israel boycott

By Leon Symons, September 3, 2009

The Trades Union Congress has come under international pressure over a motion to its annual conference calling on it to review its links with Histadrut, its Israeli counterpart.

The Fire Brigades Union (FBU) has tabled a resolution for the conference, to be held in two weeks’ time, which also calls for a ban on the importation of all goods from “illegal settlements”, the ending of all arms trading with Israel, a boycott of Israeli goods and divestment from companies “associated with the occupation”.

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Israeli lecturer's boycott call attacked

August 23, 2009

A Ben-Gurion University lecturer who called for an international boycott against Israel has been attacked by his own university.

Dr. Neve Gordon told the Los Angeles Times that he thought Israel had reached a historic crossroads and only dramatic measures could ensure its survival.

"It is indeed not a simple matter for me as an Israeli citizen to call on foreign governments, regional authorities, international social movements, faith-based organisations, unions and citizens to suspend co-operation with Israel," he wrote.

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Food writer Joanna Blythman calls for Israel boycott

By Keren David, August 20, 2009

A call for food retailers to boycott all Israeli goods has been condemned by the Israeli ambassador and anti-boycott campaigners.

In an article for trade magazine The Grocer this week, prominent food writer Joanna Blythman calls on retailers and importers “actively to look for alternatives to so-called Israeli produce”.

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First Jewish man elected to Fatah Council

By Jessica Elgot, August 17, 2009

An academic who renounced his Israeli citizenship is the first man of Jewish descent to be elected to Fatah’s Revolutionary Council.

Dr Uri Davis, 66, a lecturer at Al-Quds University, received Palestinian citizenship when he renounced his Israeli passport in the 1980s in protest of what he calls Israel’s “apartheid politics”. He was one of 700 Fatah members who were competing for 89 seats in the Council.

Dr Davis, who is married to a Palestinian woman and lives in Ramallah, was elected on a ticket to represent “non-Arabs who support the Palestinian cause”.

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