JPOST: Lawfare Project, Israel Allies team up to fight BDS product labeling
The Lawfare Project and Israel Allies Foundation are collaborating to fight the enactment of BDS measures in the European Court of Justice, which would require products from "disputed" Israeli territories to be labeled.
The Lawfare Project will use its team of over 400 lawyers in addition to the faction of nearly 1,000 legislators working for the Israel Allies Foundation to fight these BDS measures aimed at targeting products stemming from Israeli settlements located in the Palestinian territories. The mandate would be applicable to Israeli products from the West Bank, east Jerusalem and the Golan Heights.
“The European court’s decision was discriminatory on its face. It singled out Jews and opened a Pandora’s box of unintended consequences for global trade," said The Lawfare Project’s executive director Brooke Goldstein. "The Lawfare Project is proud to partner with the Israel Allies Foundation to take our fight against injustice to the next level. Allies of Israel and the Jewish people must stand together now more than ever. Jews will not sit quietly while our rights and dignity are stripped from us.”
Israel holds that product labeling assists the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement by providing a tool that can be used in its de-facto push to boycott Israel.For instance, if someone finds a bottle of Psagot wine in Slovakia that was not labeled as made in a settlement, they could take the case to a court there, which would then have to rule according to the ECJ ruling.
Israel Allies Caucuses in the EU and the UK have already taken a stand against the labeling laws and in the case of the Netherlands, even passed a resolution against them.
“During these times of significant hostility towards Israel stemming from the European Union, it is essential that we unite our allies in the parliaments across Europe, encouraging them to work as a powerful bloc against the labeling of Jewish goods. Our new partnership with the Lawfare project will allow us to effect real policy change against the anti-Semitic ruling of the European Court of Justice,” said Israel Allies Foundation President Josh Reinstein.
The issue of product labeling first came to a head in 2011, when the EU issued a directive requiring the labeling of goods from beyond the 1967 lines – the West Bank, the Golan Heights and east Jerusalem – in order to give consumers accurate information regarding the origins of their products.
The EU followed up in 2015 by issuing – over loud Israeli protests – non-binding guidelines regarding the placement of these labels to inform European consumers that they are not “made in Israel.”
The move infuriated Jerusalem, which said it would pave the way to a boycott of Israeli products. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu suspended diplomatic contacts with the EU for a short period of time for a “reassessment” of the EU’s role in the Mideast diplomatic process.
The guidelines were largely ignored by most countries.
Tovah Lazaroff and Herb Keinon contributed to this report.
Read the original report from the Jerusalem Post here.