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Norway’s 3rd largest city votes to boycott settlement products

Jewish community in Trondheim refuses request by Israeli ambassador to condemn boycott resolution, as city council calls on citizens to personally adopt the boycott as well.

Trondheim Nidarosdom Norway/ Photo Edgar El,   wikipedia

Trondheim, the third most populous city in Norway, has decided to boycott Israeli goods and services that originate in Jewish settlements in the West Bank.

A resolution passed at a city council meeting earlier this month accuses Israel of continuing “to aggressively pursue its policy of occupation.”

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“Illegal settlements are expanding, the construction of the wall continues, Palestinians are subjected to daily harassment and face major obstacles in their daily lives. This is a policy that Trondheim Municipality cannot support, ” the resolution noted. “The municipality will therefore refrain from purchasing goods and services produced in the occupied territories.”

The council also called on the city’s residents to personally adopt the boycott as well.

Israel’s Ambassador to Norway Raphael Schutz slammed the resolution and asked the Jewish community in the city to condemn the decision.

“The decision of the city council in Trondheim doesn’t contribute to an environment in which peace can be achieved. Working for a boycott, rather than toward dialogue, increases the level of hostility and mistrust between Israelis and Palestinians, ” Shutz said.

However, the Jewish community decided against condemning the resolution, saying it was a political issue, while its policy is only to condemn anti-Semitic incidents.

This isn’t the first time a Jewish community in the Diaspora refuses requests made by the Israeli Embassy to condemn a boycott of Israel.

Israeli diplomatic officials say there is a trend in which Jewish communities abroad do not wish to be associated with the State of Israel.

“The Jewish community chose to bury its head in the sand, ” an official in the Israeli Foreign Ministry said. “The State of Israel will always stand besides all of the Jews around the world, even when some Jews refuse—out of considerations of convenience and cowardice—to stand besides the State of Israel.”

In 2014, the Norwegian Labor party tried to pass legislation that would enact a national boycott of Israeli settlement products. The left-wing parties supported the bill, but the coalition opposed it and it did not pass.

After the bill proposal was rejected, Norwegian Foreign Minister Børge Brende said he would not recommend to the country’s citizens to boycott settlement products, but stressed that his country sees the settlements as illegal.

By Ynet News



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