Glasgow pro-Palestinians target Israeli dates

By Leon Symons, September 7, 2010

Dates from Israel are being driven off supermarket and grocery shop shelves in Scotland in a boycott campaign orchestrated by Palestinian supporters.

Scottish Palestinian Solidarity claim that as many as 30 Asian grocery shops in Glasgow alone were persuaded to stop selling Israeli dates to Muslims during the festival of Ramadan, which ends on September 10.

Similar campaigns took place in Edinburgh, Aberdeen, Dundee and Fife. During the month-long Ramadan, Muslims fast during the day and eat only after sunset. The boycotters called on those fasting not to break their fast on Israeli dates.

But the boycott was condemned as counterproductive by Edward Isaacs, president of the Glasgow Jewish Representative Council.

He said: "Such a boycott could lead to increased tension between the Jewish and Muslim communities here, who have very good relations."

Mr Isaacs said that members of the community would be specifically encouraged to buy goods from Israel.

He said there would be little impact on the Jewish community because the shops targeted by the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign were in predominantly Asian areas of the city. "The buy-cott campaign will be effective in areas such as Giffnock, where the Jewish community is based," said Mr Isaacs.

Last updated: 10:23am, September 8 2010