Published: 2018-07-12 12:08
Last Updated: 2018-07-12 12:21
The Irish Parliament Upper House voted on Wednesday, July 11, 2018 to ban all import of Israeli settlement products. The Control of Economic Activity (Occupied Territories) Bill 2018 will make it illegal to import goods, services or natural resources from the illegal - under international law - Israeli settlements. The bill will be passed to the Parliament Lower House before becoming a law.
According to WAFA, this move was welcomed by the Palestinians who called upon European Union member states to follow suit were voiced.
The move, which -if approved- would list Ireland as the first EU nation to enforce a boycott, angered Israel, who described the decision as “populist, dangerous and extremist," in what the Palestinian Authority called "historic and courageous.”
The Irish Parliament voted in January to try and reach a compromise with the Israeli government, which sought to soften the law under Israeli pressure, but no understandings were reached in the end.
The Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, condemned the bill saying that it aims to "support the boycott movement and to harm the State of Israel." Various Israeli officials responded to the news, as did the Embassy of Israel in Ireland in their Facebook statement below;
Settlement-made products exported to Ireland are valued between €500,00 to €1m.
“The Irish Senate has given its support to a populist, dangerous and extremist anti-Israel boycott initiative that hurts the chances of dialogue between Israel and the Palestinians; it will have a negative impact on the diplomatic process in the Middle East,” the Israeli Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
A top Palestine Liberation Organization official, Saeb Erekat in a statement issued before the vote was taken said, “This courageous step builds on the historic ties between Ireland and Palestine, as well as it shows the way forward for the rest of the European Union.”