Israel on Sunday published a list of organizations whose members are henceforth banned from entering the country due to their support of the BDS movement, which calls for boycotting and imposing sanctions on Israel.
Israel announced the list of 20 foreign organizations whose representatives are to be banned from entering Israel because they advocate for a boycott of Israel based on its treatment of Palestinians in the occupied territories. Groups in Europe, Latin America and South Africa are also named. The members of the banned organisations will be denied entry visas and residency rights under a controversial law.
"The list is another step forward in our battle against the incitement and lies of those organizations who support sanctions and boycott against our country", said Erdan. Between 2010-2013 then Strategic Affairs Ministry Director General Yossi Kuperwasser developed an action plan on how to counter BDS. Most recently, pop singer Lorde joined a number of other performers who have canceled performances in Israel amid pressure from BDS activists. "The boycott organizations need to know that the state of Israel will act against them and will not allow them to enter its territory in order to harm its citizens".
"I will act against this by every means", the minister said. The six American organizations include Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP), a left-wing activist group that "seeks an end to the Israeli occupation of the West Bank, Gaza Strip, and East Jerusalem", according its mission statement.
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Interior Minister Arye Dery said the organizations on the list are trying to exploit Israel's law and hospitality and "defame the country".
Some of the organizations included in the ban responded on social media, with the Jewish Voice for Peace tweeting: "Israel's decision to specifically ban JVP is disconcerting but not surprising, given the further erosion of democratic norms and rising anxiety about the power of BDS as a tool to demand freedom".
Supporters of BDS say a boycott will incentivize Israel to come to the negotiating table with Palestinians.
According to Diker, "Over the last two years the government has done a lot of homework to determine who are the worst violators in the BDS campaign that completely reject Israel's very right to exist as a Jewish State". A message from Vaknin-Gil confirmed, "Dan Diker and the JCPA provided fantastic research on the BDS, anti-normalization and delegitimization phenomena that really needed to be done to ensure that this global campaign can be contained".