Veolia dumped from £1bn South London contract
A local London newspaper, the Wimbledon Guardian, has today (7 May 2011) reported that only two bidders remain in the race for a £1bn (€1.14) contract in South London – neither of which are Veolia.
Ben Soffa, Secretary of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, said: ‘Local activists and PSC branches organised a really vocal campaign to oppose awarding this contract to a company that is complicit in Israel’s illegal occupation. This is just the latest in a series of setbacks for Veolia, which has failed to win a string of other public contracts in France, England, Wales, Ireland and Australia, at a cost totalling billions of Euros. Companies that are complicit in Israel’s crimes are feeling the impact – only last week, another company attempting to profit from Israel’s occupation, Ahava, announced that its flagship store in Covent Garden, London was closing down. The boycott, divestment and sanctions movement is growing, and will continue until Palestinians have freedom, peace and justice.’
Veolia, a large French multinational, is still involved in the building and operation of a new tramway linking illegal settlements in East Jerusalem with Israel. Not only do the settlements contravene article 49 of the 4th Geneva Convention forbidding an occupier transferring its own civilians into the territory it occupies, but in most cases the establishment of the Israeli settlements involved war crimes too. The tramway tightens Israel’s hold on occupied EastJerusalem, ties the settlements more firmly into Israel and undermines chances of a just peace for the Palestinian people. Veolia also operates bus services for Israeli settlers, running between the illegal settlements and Israel. The buses travel on settler roads, which have decimated Palestinian towns and villages by stealing their land for construction, and cut them off from each other.