AJDS Statement on the Israeli anti-boycott legislation.

The Israeli Knesset’s new law targetting those who advocate boycotts is of deep concern, as it undermines the principle of free, non-violent speech in a democracy. Merely unpopular opinions ought not be illegal.
We stand with other critical friends, both inside and outside Israel prepared to publicly stand against bad laws. As the New Israel Fund says: “many if not most Israelis oppose the settlement enterprise, and for good reasons. Criminalizing actors who refuse to perform in Ariel, or NGOs that support holding settlers economically accountable by not buying their goods or services, is appalling. We ourselves will not exclude support for organizations that discourage the purchase of goods or use of services from settlements.”
The occupation is a cancer on Israeli society, and attempts to protect the occupation by law goes against everything Israel claims to be. Even the Anti Defamation League in the US, a strongly pro-Israel organization considers the legislation as dangerous.
Regardless of the diverse political views within the Jewish community, there should be general and vocal opposition to this legislation, more of which is to come. In addition, we urge the Australian government to voice its concern about the legislation which damages Israel’s standing amongst its declared friends.
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