New York, NY, December 13, 2012 – The New Zealand Superannuation Fund, which invests money on behalf of New Zealand’s government, announced on December 12 that it is divesting from Israeli billionaire Lev Leviev’s company Africa Israel and its construction subsidiary Danya Cebus over their construction of Israeli settlements. The announcement came amidst heightened international criticism of Israeli settlement expansion. The move also follows a 2010 decision by the Norwegian government to divest from Africa Israel, and a 2009 decision by the British government not to do business with the company. The organizations Oxfam America, CARE and UNICEF have also severed ties with Leviev.
The announcement came as Adalah-NY is petitioning the New York City anti-hunger nonprofit City Harvest to publicly disavow Leviev, and is preparing for its sixth annual anti-apartheid caroling protest outside Leviev’s Madison Avenue jewelry store this Saturday. Adalah-NY launched a campaign for the boycott of and divestment from Leviev’s companies in 2007.
New York, NY – The award-winning New York City anti-hunger nonprofit City Harvest is avoiding requests to distance itself from funding and support from controversial Israeli billionaire Lev Leviev, despite over 500 letters to the organization complaining about Leviev’s human rights record. Leviev’s companies have built thousands of Israeli settlement homes on occupied Palestinian land in violation of international law, and have also been accused of involvement in human rights abuses and unethical business practices in the diamond industry in Angola and Namibia, and now possibly in Zimbabwe as well.
A number of media reports say that Leviev is helping to fundraise for City Harvest.
Please send an email encouraging City Harvest to publicly disavow any connection with or funding from billionaire and human rights violator Lev Leviev.
News Update: The New Zealand Superannuation Fund, which invests money on behalf of New Zealand’s government, announced on December 12 that it has excluded from its $20 billion investment portfolio two Leviev companies, Africa Israel and its construction subsidiary Danya Cebus, due to “their involvement in the construction of Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. The settlements have been cited as illegal under international law, and the Fund considers the companies’ involvement to be inconsistent with the United Nations Global Compact.”
Leviev’s companies have a well-documented history of building Israeli settlements on the agricultural land of West Bank Palestinian villages like Jayyous and Bil’in. In Africa, Leviev's companies have been accused of brutal human rights abuses, firing striking workers, illegal diamond smuggling, and dealing in conflict diamonds. More info is available by clicking on the links below to two letters that concerned activists and human rights organizations have already sent to City Harvest.