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3 February 2013 Edition

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Don’t buy goods from Israeli illegal settlements

Palestinian farmers inspired by apartheid South Africa boycott

In Ireland, all the main supermarkets — including Dunnes Stores, Tesco, Marks & Spencer, Supervalu, Superquinn, Aldi and Lidl — stock Israeli agricultural produce.

PALESTINIAN FARMERS have called on shoppers, trade unions, social movements, non-governmental organisations and human rights campaigners across the world to help enforce an effective ban on trade with Israeli illegal settlements.

The Palestinian Farmers’ Union (PFU) has earmarked Saturday 9 February as the day it wants to see a worldwide launching of boycott campaigns.

They say the “sale and purchase of goods from Israeli agricultural companies such as Mehadrin and Hadiklaim, finance and reward the on-going illegal Israeli exploitation and colonisation of Palestinian land”, adding that it undermines the chances for a just peace based on international law and respect for universal human rights.

Highlighting the success of a worldwide boycott of aparthied South African goods during the 1980s, the farmers’ union says that “citizens can make a difference” by not buying products of complicit companies and by working to convince their supermarkets to stop trading with them.

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In Ireland, all the main supermarkets — including Dunnes Stores, Tesco, Marks & Spencer, Supervalu, Superquinn, Aldi and Lidl — stock Israeli agricultural produce. Amongst the items sold are oranges, grapefruits, peppers, avocados, grapes, figs and passion fruits.  Dates, new potatoes and carrots are also regularly sold along with a number of herbs such as basil, dill, tarragon, parsley, sage, rosemary, mint and chives.

The Palestinian Farmers’ Union’s call to action is being supported by the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee, the General Union of Palestinian Peasants and Co-operatives, Palestinian Agricultural Relief Committees, the Popular Struggle Co-ordination Committee, the Stop the Wall Campaign, the Union of Agricultural Work Committees, and the Union of Palestinian Agriculture Engineers.

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