April 5, 2017 – Adalah-NY stands in solidarity with Palestinian BDS activist Omar Barghouti, in direct opposition to the Israeli government efforts to silence him and shut down the BDS movement, and affirms our determination to continue to build powerful BDS campaigns in support of justice and Palestinian rights.
In the latest phase of a systematic campaign by the Israeli government and its lobby around the world to criminalize the BDS movement, intimidate activists, and stop free speech, Israel has once again targeted Omar Barghouti with fabricated charges, following its earlier threats of “targeted civil elimination.” These attacks are another attempt to tarnish the reputation of Mr. Barghouti, even as Israel continues to carry out similar campaigns against other Palestinian BDS and human rights activists. These attacks appear to be part of the efforts of the “dirty tricks” or “tarnishing” unit the Israeli government reportedly established in 2016 to delegitimize groups and individuals that support BDS. They follow earlier announcements by Israel of plans to develop a database of Israelis who support boycotting the state, and to issue a law imposing travel bans on international supporters of BDS. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs reportedly issued a statement attacking Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) ahead of the organization’s National Membership Meeting this past weekend. All of this is taking place while states throughout the US are working to pass legislation that would criminalize BDS efforts here, in violation of the US Constitution. Here in New York, after failing to pass legislation through state bodies, Governor Andrew Cuomo issued Executive Order 154 in 2016 in an attempt to silence BDS activists. Furthermore, the NY State Senate has fast-tracked three bills to penalize those who boycott Israel, though they have not yet been presented in the State Assembly.
These attacks can only be seen as an indication of the strength, vitality, and effectiveness of the global boycott, divestment, and sanctions movement. As human rights activists and as an organization deeply committed to social justice, equality, rights, and freedom for all, we refuse to allow Israel and its cronies to silence us. Adalah-NY: The New York Campaign for the Boycott of Israel reconfirms our commitment to amplify the Palestinian call for boycott, divestment, and sanctions campaigns against Israel until it ends its policies of occupation, colonization, and apartheid, which violate international law and Palestinian human rights.