Amnesty lambasted for saying UK businesses working in West Bank are complicit in 'Israeli war crimes'

Organisation wrote to Britain's leading companies warning them about being 'heavily implicated' in settlements' expansion


Amnesty International has been told it has "no credibility" on the Occupied Territories, after the organisation said Britain’s leading companies were involved in “Israeli war crimes” if they did business “in or with the illegal Israeli settlements in the West Bank", including East Jerusalem.

Amnesty UK said it had sent copies of its new 50-page report, Think Twice: Can companies do business with the Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories while respecting human rights?, to the chief executives of all companies in the UK’s FTSE 100 and FTSE 250 financial indexes.

It warns them against being “heavily implicated in the perpetuation and expansion of the settlements".

Peter Frankental, Amnesty International UK’s Economic Affairs Programme Director, told companies that “any involvement in the deeply exploitative settlement enterprise" was "bad for the Palestinian people and bad for your company”, warning businesses that continued to operate in the West Bank or East Jerusalem might see their “reputation… tarnished for years to come.

“There’s a very clear bottom line here - any profits made by a company via the settlements come at the cost of systematically violating the rights of thousands of Palestinian people.”

Jewish Leadership Council Chief Executive Simon Johnson said he hoped the company bosses would "discard" the report.

He said Amnesty “has no credibility on this issue”.

“We will not forget how Amnesty recently left Jews out of its work on racism and refused to allow the Jewish Leadership Council to host an event at its offices," he said.

“All the time that they have been criticising Israel, their International secretariat in London has been found to have a culture of widespread bullying, public humiliation, discrimination and other abuses of power. Leading British companies need not take lectures from Amnesty.”

Board of Deputies President Marie van der Zyl said: “Again, Amnesty International has singled out Israel. The organisation has a long record of double standards on this conflict."

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