by Roddy Keenan/ Dublin/
Eric Pickles, the House of Lords Parliamentary Chairman of the UK Conservative Party’s Friends of Israel, announced that the new UK government led by Boris Johnson would make it illegal for any public body to engage with the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign.
Speaking at the International Institute for Strategic Dialogue Conference in Jerusalem on Sunday, Pickles declared that “BDS is anti-Semitic and should be treated as such.”
Pickles’ declaration, ironically at the King David Hotel, reiterated the policy outlined in the Conservative Party election manifesto published prior to the recent general election.
Opponents of the Israeli apartheid regime have responded angrily to the willingness of the UK to yet again kowtow to the USA and Israel in attempting to shut down the BDS campaign.
“Israel has been engaged in a global campaign to have laws prohibiting BDS introduced so that it can act with impunity,” explained Ben Jamal, the director of the UK Palestine Solidarity Campaign. “Unsurprisingly, a Conservative government that seeks to ally itself with Donald Trump and his far-right agenda is following suit.”
France and Germany have already passed laws against BDS, as the anti-apartheid campaign’s success has frightened the Israeli regime into stepping up its efforts worldwide to try to counter the campaign.
The PSC director emphasised the urgent need for the pro-Palestinian movement to mobilise against the anti-BDS legislation.
“All of those who hold progressive values, including recognising that consistent anti-racism includes opposition to Israeli apartheid, will need to join a broad coalition to oppose this proposed law,” declared Jamal.