Union to stop Israel visits over boycott issue

By Marcus Dysch, June 5, 2013

The GMB Congress has banned its members from visiting Israel and the Palestinian territories on Trade Union Friends of Israel-organised delegations.

Union members at the annual congress in Plymouth voted through a motion which said funding for participants in trips should be stopped because TUFI opposes a boycott of Israel.

A TUFI spokesman said the decision was “disappointing”. He highlighted the GMB’s links to Labour, whose leader Ed Miliband also opposes boycotts.

● Delegates at the Northern Ireland Public Service Alliance annual conference dropped a planned boycott of Israel after discovering accusations about segregation of Palestinians were false.

A motion put before the union – which is the largest in Northern Ireland and represents 45,000 members – noted “the passing of legislation in Israel that effectively creates segregation on buses” as the basis for a boycott. No such legislation exists in Israel.

Nipsa withdrew the motion after being informed of the error by members who contacted Northern Ireland Friends of Israel group.

Last updated: 5:32pm, June 5 2013