Letter from French MP Patrick Braouezec to PM Francois Fillon Concerning BDS

Dear Mr. Prime Minister,

During the recent celebratory dinner of the Coordination of the Jewish Organizations in France (CRIF) to which you were invited, you stated that the Boycott Divestment Sanctions (BDS) Campaign, endorsed by many local and international organizations, a campaign that was launched by Palestinian civil society and is supported by anti-colonial Israelis, was targeting Israeli as well as kosher products.

This is not true. Kosher products are not being boycotted: they are not produced in illegal settlements, the products of which are the target of boycott.

In its recent decision of 25 February 2010, the European Court of Justice denounced the import of products from the settlements, which were falsely entering Europe under the 2000 Association Agreement between the European Union and Israel. In its ruling, the Court reinforces that that each and every settlement is illegal, and located in the West Bank and not in Israel.

This is why, in contradiction to what you have said, the boycott implemented by many men and women from civil society is not scandalous but, on the contrary, in the spirit of the boycott of Apartheid South Africa, a country that violated the United Nations Charter.

Such a civic action of solidarity is aimed to asking your government to fulfill its commitment to international law, and in particular to Article 2 of the EU-Israel Association Agreement […] The government cannot forget that the State of Israel is daily violating international law by illegally occupying the Palestinian People and committing war crimes that must not be sanctioned, because the Palestinian victims have no access to universal justice.

The scope and number of such violations of international law that have been acknowledged by many international institutions render even stranger the fact that the only initiative of the Minister of Interior has been to send a letter to the State prosecutors – based on a law as old as 1881 – asking to put on trial whoever is opposing the import of settlement products.

The Government should have supported the Palestinian People and its right for self-determination, as well as to cut diplomatic and economic relations with the State of Israel as long as occupation, colonization and an apartheid policy against the Palestinian citizens of Israel are going on – the same way the French Government did in regard to Apartheid South Africa.

Due to its role in the Security Council, France would honor itself by fulfilling its duties towards international law and stating the need and the duty to apply the rules of international law.

I look forward to your response.

Patrick Braouezed, MP

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