CWP Briefing April 2015 High Court ruling on the anti-boycott law

CWP Briefing April 2015 High Court ruling on the anti-boycott law: No checks on Netanyahu’s coalition anti-democratic legislation The Coalition of Women for Peace was a party to a petition against the Israeli anti-boycott law, working jointly with Adalah and The Association for Civil Rights in Israel. On Wednesday April 15 the Israeli High Court ruling left the legislation more or less intact. The only exception was to disqualify one item, that enabled anyone to sue for boycott related damages “without proof.” The anti-boycott bill is one of a host of racist and anti-democratic legislation aimed at silencing opposition and curtailing the rights of the Palestinian minority. CWP wishes to affirm once again that boycott is a worldwide recognized and legitimate nonviolent tool in struggles for social and political change. The Israeli court failed to protect the right of citizens to voice criticism of government policies. We will not be deterred from exposing and bringing to public discussion the economic interests driving the occupation. We will continue resisting the occupation using all legitimate, nonviolent means. With the absence of legal checks on political persecution in Israel, Netanyahu's shocking comments on election day conveying racism and intolerance of dissent will without a doubt be written into law in the coming Knesset. The High Court decision failed to identify this grave danger. It gives a green light to anti-democratic legislation such as the Nationality bill that seeks to anchor Israel’s Jewishness in legislation; green light to instituting a death penalty for Palestinians accused of terrorism; green light to banning leftie organizations from receiving donations, effectively shutting them down. Such bills are already a negotiating chip in the process of coalition formation. One of them even targets the authority of the legislative branch itself by proposing to prevent the High Court from intervening in Knesset and Central Election Committee decisions. In light of the court ruling, CWP calls upon the international community to: • Condemn the attack on Israeli civil society and freedom of expression • Affirm that the banning of any call for boycott used as a tool in the struggle against occupation is anti-democratic. • Condemn Israel’s impunity as a so-called democracy despite its apparent disrespect of fundamental civil and human rights.