Union to stop Israel visits over boycott issue

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