Upcoming Events

  • סיור של עיר עמים בירושלים(0 أيام)
  • מופע בסלון - עופר גולני(0 أيام)
  • 5th Bil'in Conference(0 أيام)
 

الإبحار

 

Global IMC Network

  • www.indymedia.org
 

Israelis Call On Norway to Divest from Occupation

نسخة للطباعةنسخة للطباعةSend to friendSend to friendPDF versionPDF version

Israeli Organizations Call on _**_Norway_**_ to Divest from the Israeli
Occupation_*

/“We, Israeli organizations …, call upon the Norwegian people to join us
in our efforts and to stop investing in the Israeli occupation of
Palestinian territory"./ Twenty different Israeli organizations send an
appeal to the Norwegian people to withdraw Norwegian national pension
fund’s investments in all Israeli and international corporations which
are involved in the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories.(see
the full letter below, and also in:
http://coalitionofwomen.org/home/english/articles/norway-fund)

In an unprecedented way, a wide array of Israeli civil society and
grassroots organizations has sent a letter to the Norwegian Pension
Fund, addressed to its Council on Ethics, urging it to support their
efforts for a just peace and equality in Israel/Palestine by divesting
from all companies involved in the Israeli occupation.

These Israeli organizations include feminist organizations and community
centers, peace and human rights organizations, comprised of Jewish and
Palestinian women and men, organizations concerned with civil rights and
equality within the state of Israel and organizations dedicated to
ending the occupation of Palestinian territories, to the benefit of all
people living in Israel/ Palestine.

This appeal follows and expands a previous call on the Norwegian fund,
by two Palestinian West Bank villages

and eleven other organizations

from around the world to divest from Africa-Israel
, an Israeli
corporation involved in building Israeli settlements on occupied
Palestinian land.

But Africa-Israel is not the only settlement-builder on the fund’s
investment portfolio
. As
shown by a recent report
by Who Profits from
the Occupation research, at least 30 other
companies have a continuous involvement in the occupation: some build
illegal Israeli settlements or provide vital services to them; some
provide specifically designed equipment for the surveillance and
repression of Palestinian population through restrictions of movement
and collective punishments; some exploit Palestinian labor and natural
resources.

The examples listed also include international corporations such as the
Belgian Bank Dexia
, which finances
Israeli illegal settlements’ municipalities by long term loans, or the
Mexican Cemex and the
German HeidelbergCement
, both giant
construction materials’ suppliers that own and operate Israeli plants
and quarries on occupied land, and thus both contribute to the Israeli
illegal colonization of Palestinian lands, and exploit the Palestinian
nonrenewable natural resources, for the needs of the Israeli economy and
in violation of international law.

The letter is framed as a general appeal to the Norwegian people,
mentioning the Norwegians’ “long-standing commitment to peace, justice
and democracy” in Israel/Palestine, and presenting the current
investment in corporations that “support and maintain the Israeli
occupation” as contradicting the Norwegian governments’ own policies, as
well as the pension fund’s own ethical guidelines
,

which preclude investments in companies involved in gross violations of
human rights or humanitarian principles. Copies have been sent to
Norwegian civil society organizations, ministers and parliamentarians.

For more information, please contact: Dalit Baum, The Coalition of Women
for Peace, (972) 54-7767651, smamit_d@yahoo.com

*_____________________________________________________
_*

*_THE FULL LETTER:_*

May 14, 2009

The Council on Ethics
Norwegian Government Pension Fund
Government of Norway

Dear Members of the Council on Ethics,

We, Israeli organizations, comprised of Jewish and Palestinian women and
men and dedicated to building a just peace and to promoting human rights
and equal civil rights in Israel/Palestine,
Call upon the Norwegian people to join us in our efforts and to stop
investing in the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territory.

It has come to our attention that the Norwegian governmental Pension
Fund, as of December 31^st 2008, is heavily invested in corporations
whose activities continuously support and maintain the Israeli
occupation, in violation of international human rights and humanitarian
law. These companies, both Israeli and international, build illegal
Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territory or provide
vital services to them; provide specifically designed equipment for the
surveillance and repression of Palestinian population through
restrictions of movement and collective punishments; or take part in the
illegal exploitation of Palestinian nonrenewable natural resources for
the needs of the Israeli market.

We see the Norwegian Pension Fund’s investments in these corporations as
contradicting the Norwegian government’s commitment to international
law, the Norwegian people’s long standing commitment to peace, justice
and democracy in our region, and the Pension Fund’s own ethical
guidelines. We therefore urge the Council on Ethics to remove from the
fund’s investment portfolio all corporations that support and maintain
the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territory.

Thank you,

*The Coalition of Women for Peace*
coalitionofwomen.org

*Al- Tufula Center*
www.altufula.org

*Bat Tzafon for Peace and Equality *

*Children of Abraham*
http://groups.google.com/group/bnei-avraham?hl=en

*Hacampus Lo Shotek*

*Hithabrut - Tarabut *
www.tarabut.info

*Humans without Borders – Assisting Medical Accessibility*
http://humanitywithoutborders.ning.com

*Israel** Social TV*

www.tv.social.org.il

*Kayan – Feminist Organization*
www.kayan.org.il

*MachsomWatch – Women against the Occupation and for Human Rights *
www.machsomwatch.org

*Mossawa** **Center**, the **Advocacy** **Center** for Arab Citizens in
**Israel*
www.mossawacenter.org **

*New Profile*

www.newprofile.org

*Ta’ayush, Jewish Arab Partnership*

*The **Alternative** **Information** **Center*
www.alternativenews.org

*The Israeli Committee for Residency Rights (ICRR)*

*The Israeli Committee against House Demolitions *
www.icahd.org

*Women against Violence*
www.wavo.org

*Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, **Israel** Section*

*Yesh Gvul*

www.yeshgvul.org

*Zochrot*

www.nakbainhebrew.org

CC: The Prime Minister of Norway, the Minister of Finance, Parliamentarians

*_Appendix:_*

Examples of corporations on the Norwegian Pension Fund’s investment
list, which support and maintain the Israeli occupation.

*A.* Corporations on the investment list which are involved, on an
on-going basis, in the construction of housing and infrastructure for
illegal Israeli settlements in the occupied territory:

1. *Africa Israel (Israel)
* – The company has
been involved in the construction and sale of housing projects,
infrastructure and apartments in multiple Israeli settlements throughout
the West Bank, through its subsidiary Danya Cebus
and through its
real estate agencies' network Anglo-Saxon
.

2. *Alstom (France)
*– Through its
Israeli subsidiary Citadis Israel - builds the Jerusalem light rail
project, which is designed to connect Israeli settlements with Jerusalem.

3. *Dexia (Belgium)
*– Through its
subsidiary, Dexia Israel, the bank provides long term loans and
financial services to municipalities of Israeli settlements in the West
Bank.* *

4. *Housing and Construction Holdings (Israel)
*– Through its
subsidiaries Solel Boneh and Shikun Ovdim, the company builds housing
projects in many West Bank settlements. The company is also a major
shareholder of Otzma Pereg
(80%), an air
conditioning systems factory which is located in an industrial zone in
the occupied West Bank.

5. *Jerusalem Economy (Israel)
* – Develops and
rents out Israeli industrial and commercial spaces in the occupied
territory directly and through its subsidiary Industrial Buildings
Corporation .

*B*. Corporations on the investment list which own and operate Israeli
production or service centers in the Israeli West Bank settlements:

1. *Assa Abloy (Sweden)
*– Owns Mul-T-Lock
, an Israeli locks'
company with a factory in a settlement industrial zone in the West Bank.

2. *_Emblaze (_**_Israel_**_)_* – Through its subsidiary, Formula
Systems , owns
Matrix , that
operates an offshoring software services center in an Israeli settlement
in the West Bank.

3. *Frutarom Industries (Israel)
* – Owns a food
additives' plant in Mishor Edomim settlement industrial zone in the West
Bank.

4. *_Makhteshim-Agan Industries (_**_Israel_**_)_* – Partially owns
(25%) Fibertech , a
fiberglass pipes' plant which is located in an Israeli settlement in the
occupied West Bank.

5. *Unilever (Netherlands)
*- Owns (51%) the
company Beigel and Beigel
, which is a baked
goods' factory in an Israeli settlement industrial zone in the occupied
West Bank.

*C*. Corporations that own and operate Israeli industry in the occupied
West Bank, while exploiting non-renewable Palestinian natural resources
for the needs of the Israeli market:

1. *Cemex (Mexico)
*– The
company's subsidiary Readymix Industries
(Israel), operates
three plants in Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank, provides
concrete elements for various construction projects in the occupied West
Bank, and partners in an Israeli quarry for aggregates in the West Bank.
These aggregates are used in the Israeli construction industry. Thus,
the company is complicit in the exploitation of non-renewable
Palestinian natural resources to the benefit of the occupying power.

2. *HeidelbergCement (Germany)
* – Through Hanson
Israel - owns
three plants in West Bank settlements and one Israeli aggregates quarry
in the occupied West Bank. These aggregates are used in the Israeli
construction industry. Thus, the company is complicit in the
exploitation of non-renewable Palestinian natural resources to the
benefit of the occupying power.

3. *Veolia Environnement (France)
* – Operates
regular bus lines in Israeli settlements, on Israeli-only roads in the
West Bank. Further, the company has been contracted to operate the
Jerusalem light rail project, which is designed to connect Israeli
settlements with Jerusalem. Through its subsidiary Veolia Environmental
Services (Israel), the company owns and operates the Tovlan Landfill in
the occupied Jordan Valley, using captured Palestinian natural and land
resources for the needs of Israeli settlements.

*D*. Corporations involved in the supply of specifically-designed
equipment for the repression and control of the occupied Palestinian
population:

1. *Caterpillar (USA)
* - This company's
specifically-designed militarized D9 bulldozers are used by the Israeli
army as weapons against Palestinian population and property. The
company's tools have been used in demolitions of Palestinians' houses in
the occupied territory, and in the construction of the separation wall
and settlements on Palestinian land.

2. *Elbit Systems (Israel)
*– One of the main
subcontractors for electronic detection systems in the separation fence
and the seamline barrier for the Israeli Ministry of Defense. The
company also develops and supplies UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) to
the Israeli army, which are used for military attacks, civilian
surveillance and targeted assassinations in the West Bank and Gaza.

*This list is based on research by “Who Profits from the Occupation”
, that has detected 31 companies on the
Fund’s investments’ list which have been involved in the occupation of
the Palestinian territory.
For the full list see: http://www.whoprofits.org/Newsletter.php?nlid=41*

التعليقات

sounds like a fake story

Still sounds like a fake story

Re: Israelis Call On Norway to Divest from Occupation

Divestment has always been more about symbolism than economics. After all, boycotting a company or country can have a direct impact on the top (and thus the bottom) line. But you can only divest in a company by selling your shares of its stock, which requires someone to buy them. And unless the world knows WHY you have sold a particular stock, your choice becomes just one more “sell” decision taken by investors millions of times a day for millions of undisclosed reasons.

This is why divestment campaigns are all about getting prominent institutions (such as universities, cities, churches and unions) to make divestment decisions, no matter how minimal in economic terms, tied to public declarations that these actions are specifically about Israel or the Israeli-Arab conflict. After all, a student organization calling for boycott, divestment and sanction (BDS) against Israel is just part of ongoing campus political noise. But Harvard University or the Presbyterian Church tying its name to a divestment call packs political power, allowing anti-Israel groups to punch way above their weight by leveraging the reputation of someone else.

But what happens when an institution refuses to play along? You then end up with strange cases like the recent divestment brouhaha at Hampshire College.

Hampshire, a small, progressive liberal arts college in Western Massachusetts, has one of the smallest endowments in the country. But it stands as a symbol having been the first college to publically divest that small endowment from companies doing business in South Africa in the 1980s. Hampshire as a symbolic prize meant that divestment activists, in the form of a student group called Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP), kept up its divestment crusade years after divestment had moved on at most other schools.

College administrators were respectful and polite to SJP, even if they made it clear they had no intention of joining SJP in denouncing the Jewish state as the next South Africa. But during the course of an outside consultant’s review of school investment holdings, Hampshire decided to sell shares in a particular fund identified as invested in companies that did not meet the school’s ethical investment guidelines (policies that included support for unions, and statements on issues such as Sudan/Darfur, but no stance regarding Israel). SJP, which had asked the school to divest in companies doing business with Israel (some of which turned out to be in the fund selected by Hampshire’s outside consultant), quickly declared victory, announcing to the world that Hampshire had become the first US college to openly divest from the Jewish state.

Given the importance of this alleged “victory,” it was curious why SJP made these public pronouncements on its own, rather than standing alongside college administrators and investment managers to announce this supposedly historic decision. The reason for SJP’s independent action quickly became clear when the administration announced that its investment decisions had nothing to do with Israel or the Middle East, and that SJP was deliberately misleading the public for its own political ends.

This confusion continued for several weeks as Hampshire College administrators tried to have it both ways, allowing the student group to declare victory while assuring the press and alumni that the school had not divested. Much is made of Alan Dershowitz’s call for a boycott of donations to Hampshire (where Dershowitz’s son attended), but in fact the prominent Harvard attorney only clarified that the school could not straddle this issue, leading Hampshire President Hexter to declare in no uncertain terms that (1) the school had not divested in Israel; (2) the school maintained investments in the very companies SJP claimed were being boycotted and would continue to invest in them in the future; and (3) that SJP was inappropriately speaking on behalf of the college, unacceptable behavior that could have consequences for the student group.

By then, SJP had already sent out press releases and public statements saying Hampshire had done what it clearly had not, taking advantage of the administration’s initial lack of clarity to encourage similar decisions at other schools. While they eventually modified their statements, moving from unequivocally declaring Hampshire was on their side to saying that SJP simply believed this to be the case (despite administration denials) with all their hearts.

On the one hand, this campaign of deception was successful with Hampshire continuing to be held aloft as an example for other institutions to join Boycott, Divestment and Sanction (BDS) campaigns against Israel. At the same time, the behavior of SJP has put other schools on notice that being polite and respectful to student groups calling for divestment reviews caries a risk since these groups have proven themselves willing to do and say anything (including manipulating institutions and deceiving the public, regardless of the cost to a university) to gain their own political ends.

While the recent Hampshire fiasco offered groups like SJP a temporary perceived victory, it may have also spelled defeat for any other similar divestment project in the future by broadcasting a warning regarding the excesses and dishonesty of divestment’s promoters. Having seen the results of Hampshire falling for divestment’s bait-and-switch, what are the chances that other colleges will fall into the same trap?

Random Image

1554_10266533
 

Other Press

أحد 12 December 2010
أحد 24 October 2010
سبت 21 August 2010
ثلاثاء 3 August 2010
More ...
 

تلقيم

لَقِّم المحتوى Features

لَقِّم المحتوى Newswire