Palestinian unions say no to Israel boycott

By Marcus Dysch, April 28, 2011

Palestinian trade unions have encouraged Britain's biggest public sector union, Unison, to maintain its links with Israeli counterparts.

A delegation of Unison officials visited Israel and the Palestinian territories to review its relationship with the Histadrut (Israeli TUC).

The team's report said all the groups they met had encouraged Unison to work with Histadrut and encourage it to tackle Israeli government policy.

It stated: "The Palestinian General Federation of Trade Unions in particular said that Unison should maintain links with the Histadrut so that we could put pressure on them to take a more vocal public stance against the occupation and the settlements."

It concluded by advocating a policy of "critical engagement" with Histadrut on issues including the viability of a Palestinian state, West Bank settlements and the blockade of Gaza.

Eric Lee of Trade Unions Linking Israel and Palestine said Palestinian trade unionists regularly support engagement and urge better ties with Israeli groups.

Last updated: 10:40am, April 28 2011