ZFNZ Media Release on Amnesty International’s call to boycott Israel

It is with great disappointment that a mere two days after the world commemorated the International Holocaust Remembrance Day, that Amnesty International would be undertaking an international campaign advocating the boycott of Jewish businesses in Israel. 


Amnesty International claims that this is just against “Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories” which for Amnesty includes East Jerusalem and the Jewish Quarter of the Old City.


Amnesty claim that the Settlements are “illegal under international law and are also at the root cause of a vast range of human rights violations suffered by Palestinian communities.” Amnesty International yet again chooses to ignore the complexity of the situation between the Israelis and the Palestinians, they choose to ignore that the legal aspect of the West Bank and the settlements are far from agreed upon by experts in international law, and they continuously ignore the human rights abuse on the Palestinian people by Mahmoud Abbas’s Palestinian Authority (PA) in the West Bank and by Hamas in the Gaza Strip. 


Amnesty International continually chooses to look at the situation between the Israelis and the Palestinian Arabs only through Palestinian eyes and only on very rare occasions will hold the PA and Hamas to account. 


The call for a boycott of Jewish Israeli businesses so soon after the International Holocaust Remembrance Day reminds us that the last time Jewish businesses were boycotted was in pre-WW2 Germany prior to the Holocaust, which resulted in the murder of 6 million Jewish people. 


Amnesty International continually focuses on Israel and the boycott of Israeli goods and businesses in the disputed territories of the West Bank, or Judea and Samaria as it is properly known by.  Yet they ignore disputes in more clear cut areas of occupation such as Turkish occupied Cyprus, Chinese occupied Tibet or Russian occupied Ukraine to name but a few. Amnesty International have also given their support to a One-State solution with respect to Israel-Palestine, a solution that will most likely result in the elimination of the world’s only Jewish State. 


Amnesty International’s continual double standards, demonisation and delegitimisation of Israel can only lead to the conclusion that Amnesty International are at best disproportionately biased against Israel and at worst suffer from institutionalised antisemitism. Ultimately, Amnesty International’s position does not contribute to a peaceful resolution to the situation in Israel, but reinforces Palestinian violence and intransience.