Sanctions

Israel is a country in breach of almost all of its obligations under international law. Sanctions were the final blow to the apartheid regime in South Africa, and given the dependency of Israel upon global markets, sanctions at a state, regional or institutional level will be a highly effective measure to bring about real pressure.

Israel’s membership in or association with various diplomatic and economic forums, such as the United Nations, EU and OECD, provide an unwarranted veneer of respectability and material support for its crimes. Free trade agreements with Israel play a key role in normalizing and whitewashing Israel’s crimes and in emboldening its impunity. By calling for sanctions against Israel, campaigners educate society about Israel’s violations of international law and seek to end the complicity of international institutions and other states in these violations.

The principle problem of sanctions is that action rests on states and global institutions, many of whom have a long history of supporting or implementing colonialism and occupations in the Middle East. However more recently several states have engaged in measures that may be considered first steps towards sanctions. The decision by many OECD member countries to boycott an OECD tourism conference or recent efforts targeting Israel’s involvement in the European Union such as the recent call for sanctions from 26 ex-EU leaders are two recent examples.

There are three areas to which sanctions can be applied: military links, including partnerships, agreements and joint operations; economic links, including trade, co-operation, forums, agreements, and joint research initiatives; and diplomatic links, including relations on an official level, participation in international institutions, external forums and networks and meetings between state representatives.

Recent Sanctions Articles

News

Palestine campaigners welcome Dublin City Council motion calling for end to attacks on Gaza and for arms embargo & trade sanctions on Israel

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Motion calls upon the Irish government to push for an arms embargo and trade sanctions on Israel.

Statements

Effective BDS actions more important than ever to support Palestinians in Gaza and hold Israel to account

Smoke seen over the sky of Gaza following an Israeli air strike, July 8, 2014. © Yotam Ronen/ActiveStills

The BDS movement calls on supporters of human rights to take effective actions, particularly in the shape of BDS campaigns, to show solidarity and pressure Israel to end its regime of occupation, colonialism and apartheid

News

17 EU members take action against corporate complicity with Israeli crimes

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At least 12 more European governments published online guidance warning firms of the risks involved in trade and other economic links with illegal Israeli settlements, bringing the total number of countries to publish such advice to 17

Statements

Israel must be held accountable for its collective punishment of Palestinians

The Israeli military has conducted hundred of raids across the West Bank and launched dozens of attacks on Gaza. © Oren Ziv/ActiveStills

Israel is only able to act with utter impunity because of the military, economic and political support it receives from governments around the world

News

EU bans poultry exports from illegal Israeli settlements

Farmers in Gaza call for a boycott of Israeli agricultural exports

The decision is an implementation of the EU’s commitment not to recognise Israeli sovereignty over occupied Palestinian territory

News

South African Parliament’s Solidarity Conference Adopts BDS against Israel

South Africa’s Parliamentary Portfolio Committee held a “Solidarity Conference in Support of the Peoples of Palestine, Western Sahara and Cuba” on Thursday, 6th February 2014. The session was opened by an icon of the anti-apartheid struggle, Ahmed Kathrada. He was … Continue reading 

Statements

UN year of solidarity with the Palestinian people begins with boycott success

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Just three weeks into 2014, the BDS movement has already achieved important successes

Statements

Round-up of BDS successes in 2013

This round-up was published in conjunction with a Palestinian BDS National Committee statement looking ahead to 2014.

News

Dutch legal experts write to Dutch foreign minister on cooperation forum with Israel

The Dutch government is obligated to promote the realisation of the Palestinian right to self-determination and to refrain from facilitating the Israeli settlement policy

News

Latin America roundup: BDS campaigns target complicity with Israeli apartheid

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Brazilian social movements campaign against the free trade agreement between the Mercosul and Israel, Colombian groups launch Veolia petition and Mexican activists protest Israeli propaganda events

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