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anti-boycott law

  • The redundancy of Israel's 'Jewish Nation-State Law'

    The Israeli government is pushing a law that would force judges to prioritize Israel’s Jewish character over democratic principles. But that has always been the case. The “Jewish Nation-State Law,” which is currently making its way through the Knesset as a proposed Basic Law – the closest thing Israel has to a constitutional amendment – would require the High Court to prioritize Israel’s Jewish nature over democratic principles in its rulings, according to Haaretz. [tmwinpost] The bill asserts that the justices of the highest court in the land must interpret Israeli law with the understanding that the right to self-determination in Israel…

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  • Arab citizens, not Israeli leftists, pay the real price for speaking out

    The Israeli government may be cracking down on human rights NGOs and left-wing activists, but Palestinians citizens of Israel are the ones suffering from concrete persecution — with sometimes fatal results. The recently-passed law prohibiting the entry of boycott supporters into Israel is just the latest in a string of legislation and administrative measures aimed at curtailing freedoms and cracking down on dissent against the occupation. But this broad trend actually obscures two separate phenomena, with distinct dynamics and implications. [tmwinpost] The first one is the ongoing oppression of Palestinian citizens of Israel. Although better off than the non-citizens in the West Bank…

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  • Israel passes 'dissenter ban' barring entry to boycott advocates

    It's impossible to predict how and against whom the new law will be applied, but the message it sends is clear: if your politics don't toe the Israeli government line, you won't be allowed in. Even if your opposition is entirely non-violent. As Donald Trump signed a revised travel ban against nationals of six Muslim countries and many refugees, Israel's Knesset passed a law that bars giving temporary visas or residency to any non-Israeli citizen who has publicly called for or pledged to participate in a boycott of Israel. [tmwinpost] The way the law is worded makes its possible application very…

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  • The right to boycott is non-negotiable

    Regardless of one’s views of BDS, it is ridiculous that one should have to tell self-proclaimed ‘democracies’ that the right to boycott is a basic civil right, not a punishable crime.  Last week, over 120 people attended a conference in Nazareth on the subject of “BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) and ‘48 Palestinians (citizens living inside Israel’s 1948 borders).” Although the discussions were lively, many participants were cautious with their choice of words: Israel’s Anti-Boycott Law – which allows groups and citizens to be sued for calling for a boycott of Israeli institutions, including settlements – cast a heavy shadow…

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  • Boycott goes on trial in Israel's High Court

    Civil rights organizations argue the 'anti-boycott law' has created a chilling effect, stifling debate on one of the most divisive issues facing Israeli society. If that's the case, the state counters, then how has BDS grown so much in recent years? In a hearing that felt at times like the political boycott itself was on trial, an extended panel of nine justices from Israel’s High Court of Justice heard arguments for and against legislation targeting calls to boycott Israel on Sunday. It was the second such session following petitions by civil rights groups asking the court to strike down the…

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  • Israeli High Court to hear petition against 'anti-boycott law'

    An expanded panel of nine justices of the Israeli High Court of Justice will hear a petition against the "anti-boycott law" Sunday morning, which several NGOs are arguing silences debate on one of the most important and divisive issues in Israeli society. Passed by the Knesset in 2011, the law, formally known as the "Law for Prevention of Damage to State of Israel through Boycott," allows those who feel they have been harmed by a boycott - whether against Israel or an Israeli institution or territory (i.e. the settlements in the West Bank) - to sue the person or organization who…

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  • Knesset bill would formalize second-class status for Arab citizens

    New Knesset bill aims to have "Jewish nature" of state preferred over democracy, cancel official status of Arabic, and have Jewish law "guide" courts' rulings There is one talking point repeated in every hasbara (the Hebrew term for state sponsored propaganda) talk given by an Israeli representative, or in every booklet your campus' Jewish Agency representative might hand you. It has to do with "the full rights" of Palestinian citizens in Israel, including the status of Arabic as an official language, and the equality of all Israeli citizens under the law. This is the heart of "the only democracy in…

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  • Boycott law proves Israel's one-state vision

    More than anti-democratic, the boycott law is indicative of Israel's de facto annexation of the West Bank Everyone who is up in arms about the passing of the boycott law this week has been emphasizing the severity of its violation of freedom of expression and dialogue. While this is of course true, what is even more alarming about the law, which has gone largely unmentioned in the press or by organizations opposing it, is what it says about the State's relation to the territory under its control: The boycott law makes no distinction between Israel and the Occupied Territories and thus…

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  • Knesset study: No democracy has similar anti-boycott laws

    Some claim that the Israeli anti-boycott bill is similar to anti-boycott measures in other democratic countries. A Knesset fact finding commission found that there are similar anti-boycott measures in countries like Venezuela and Eritrea but could not find anything similar in another democracy. Late yesterday evening after a marathon discussion which bordered on a filibuster, the Israeli Knesset passed the anti-Boycott bill through its final reading. The landmark bill criminalizes support of boycotts against Israel and its occupation, exposing individuals and organizations that support such boycotts to endless lawsuits and heavy fines. The anti-boycott bill is latest in a wave…

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