Statement of Palestine

Norway trade unionists endorses Israel full boycott

Published  – May 12. 2017

Translation of the Norwegian publications

The Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions (LO)  demands that the Norwegian Government adopts a policy that will contribute to the end of the israeli occupation in the West Bank, land grab of Palestinian Territory. The blockade of Gaza needs to end, the walls needs to be torn down, Palestinian refugees must be given the right to return needs to be respected, and a development of a democratic state solution that will secure equal rights for both societies. Since the strategy of dialogue and signing accords has failed repeatedly, the next move needs to be sanctions in form of a cultural, financial and academical boycott.

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2017 marks the 50th year since the start of israel’s occupation of Palestinian Territory. The israeli authorities are stripping the Palestinians of basic human rights and possibility for financial growth and independence. The blockade on Gaza, the illegal wall between the West Bank and the aggressive settlement expansions, prohibits the Palestinian’s right to self-determination and natural resources. The continuous division of Palestinian Territories will also make the establishment of a Palestinian State harder.

Today 3 million Palestinian refugees live in exile around the world. A life dominated with unemployment, and few possibilities for a secure future in dignity. LO demands the the situation for the Palestinian refugees is met in accordance with the UN-194 Which establishes the right of Palestinians to return.

Palestinians are treated like second class citizens in their host-nations, in israel and in Palestine. Their properties are stolen, they are subjected to continuous harassment. They lose their freedom of movement and arbitrary imprisonment. Both israeli and Palestinian citizens have the right to live in peace, and both Palestinian and israeli authorities needs to condemn violence and discrimination.

Thousands of Palestinians are incarcerated in israeli prisons. And this last month 1600 prisoners went on hungerstrike because of inhumane treatment. LO demands that Palestinian prisoners are treated in accordance with international standards and that they receive medical attention,  access to food and contact with their families. israels use of Iseael’s international law enforcement of prolonged detention without trial needs to end. LO condemns that israel arrest Palestinian children from the age of 12 years old, torture them and isolate them from their families for months. LO is critical to  israel’s violations of the UN Child Conventions for arresting children.

30% of the Palestinian population is unemployed, the youth is hit hardest. There is no social security system for this group. Approximately 120.000 palestinians work in israel, most of them illegally. LO will continue to support PGFTU, to ensure the rights of Palestinian workers. The conflict between the Palestinians and israel is more tense than it’s been in ages. A two state solution is still the ideal result we want to persuade. This needs to happen with a mutual understanding and willingness to coexist peacefully. The policy israel is using today will make it solution impossible to reach this solution.

LO calls for the government to recognize the Palestinian state within the pre-67 borders. After this the Norwegian government needs to persist for Palestine to become a fully accepted member og the UN. Recognizing Palestine will make their position stronger under negotiations, and make a two state solution possible.

The blockade of Gaza have been operative since 2007 and carried out 3 massive invasions since the blockade was established. The last invasion resulted in massive destruction. 100.000 lost their homes, and 60.000 are still homeless. Access to water and electricity is critical and 60% of the population is unemployed. Hard restrictions on import and export of products through the wall has a critical impact on the economical development on Gaza and great suffering on the population. LO calls for the end on the blockade on Gaza.

LO appeals for the end of the occupation of the West Bank and  for the divestment of the israel’s settlement policy that is an actual cause of the annexation of the occupied territories. Following this LO demand that israel  comply with the demands in 2016-UN resolution 2334 and an immediate halt to the ongoing construction of new settlements and pull out the illegal settlers from the occupied territories in accordance with the Geneva convention that forbid the displacement of a civil population inside occupied territories.

israel has had a dramatic increase of Palestinian buildings. Based on the ground that the buildings where constructed without a permit, because a Palestina construction permit in Eastern Jerusalem usually is rejected. East Jerusalem is in area-C, and covers 60% of the West Bank. Thousands of Palestinians live under the constant fear that they will lose their homes, and they will be evicted.

The occupation contributes to the political and financial power over the Palestinian population. Import of products from israeli settlements and industrial areas in the West Bank, needs to be prohibited. Norwegian authorities needs to take initiative for an international boycott of these products. We endorse the Norwegian government to secure that the state’s pension fund and Norwegian companies don’t empower the occupation by financing these products.

The maritime borders  for shelf- and sea borders in the south-eastern parts of the Mediterranean sea is unresolved, including the area around Gaza and israel. Norway and Norwegian gas- and oil companies should not be cooperating with israel in projects where israel have the purpose of extracting oil form unresolved and deputed areas like this. LO encourage Norwegian consumers to buy Palestinian products to contribute to a growth in the Palestinian economy.

LO condemns the israeli lawmakers for instating a law that forbids people that encourage an economical, academical and cultural boycott of israel or areas under israeli control. This is an attack on freedom of speech and the democratic rights in a civil society!

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