British unions back boycott on Israeli settlement goods
British trade unions on Tuesday backed a boycott of goods from Israeli settlements, saying popular brands were "making profits on the back of oppression."
Delegates at the annual Trades Union Congress (TUC) in Manchester, northwest England, voted unanimously to encourage unions and pension funds to disinvest from and boycott goods of firms they believed were profiting from settlements.
"Household names are making money out of illegal settlements, making profits on the back of oppression, "said Paul Kenny, general secretary of the GMB union.
The TUC now plans to contact supermarkets and other retailers and urge them to stop selling goods from settlements, in a move aimed at strengthening a policy they agreed on last year.
"We must put teeth into the policy we passed last year," said Kenny, adding that steps to help Palestinians should go beyond simply making speeches and agreeing conference resolutions.
The move came as US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton arrived in Jerusalem late on Tuesday for further Israeli-Palestinian peace talks aimed at narrowing the gap on Jewish settlements and tackling core issues.
New direct peace talks were launched in Washington on September 2.
© 2010 AFP