Shalom Life | July 25, 2014

Holland Opposes Ban on Israeli Products

Prime Minister Mark Rutte announces opposition to Israeli ban, adding they must enforce Europe's legislation on labelling settlement goods

By: Graham Sigurdson

Published: September 23rd, 2013 in News » World

Holland Opposes Ban on Israeli Products

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte has voiced his country's opposition to an import ban on Israeli products, although he added that they must enforce the European Union legislation on labelling settlement goods.

In a letter to the European Jewish Congress (EJC) a Dutch official (writing in Rutte’s name) stated "I would like to stress that the Netherlands opposes any type of import ban or the boycott of Israeli products." The letter, which was obtained by JTA, had been sent to Moshe Kantor, the president of the EJC as a response to several letters Kantor sent out to EU heads of states. In these letters, Kantor stressed that in labelling products from areas that the EU considers illegal settlements, they were being counterproductive to peace efforts between Israelis and Palestinians.

Rutte’s letter came following reports that, in July, Dutch supermarkets were boycotting settlement goods, which the supermarkets denied. In March, the Dutch government advised businesses to refrain from labelling products that originated in the Golan Heights, West Bank, and Eastern Jerusalem, as "Made in Israel." Indeed, this too came following a decision in 2012 by the EU Foreign Affairs Council to label goods from settlements that "obliges the Dutch government to fully and effectively enforce existing EU legislation," Rutte said.

As of yet, the council has yet to release any sort of practical guideline regarding the labelling of goods.

Kantor’s letter was not responded to quite so tactfully from other members of the EU. William Hague, the British Foreign Secretary replied by saying "I’m afraid that I cannot agree with your concerns about EU labelling of settlement produce. The settlements are illegal under international law, an obstacle to peace."

On September 16, Kantor took out a full-page ad in the Financial Times of London arguing against new EU guidelines that prohibited EU funding for Israeli projects in areas the European Union identifies as settlements. The ad stated that the guidelines singled out Israel alone to be criticized, and "serve to minimize the chances of lasting peace."

Jon Stewart Parodies His Critics for Calling Him “Pro-Hamas” [VIDEO] Jon Stewart Parodies His Critics for Calling Him “Pro-Hamas” [VIDEO] TrendingBelgian Café Posts "No Jews Allowed" Sign Belgian Café Posts "No Jews Allowed" Sign TrendingHoward Stern Goes On Pro-Israel Rant [VIDEO] Howard Stern Goes On Pro-Israel Rant [VIDEO] Trending
 

Startup Club: GetYou

July 24, 2014 | By Caitlin Marceau
Startup Club: GetYou

The new app has been described as the "Tinder-Meets-Secret-Meets-Flirting Game"

Read More

Standing with Israel, from Around the World

July 24, 2014 | By Daniel Koren
Standing with Israel, from Around the World

A new social media campaign initiated by StandWithUs invites people to show their support of Israel by sending photos of their passports

Read More

Zach Braff Sends Touching Video To His Biggest Fan [VIDEO]

July 24, 2014 | By Ashley Baylen
Zach Braff Sends Touching Video To His Biggest Fan [VIDEO]

The 'Wish I Was Here' director and star recorded a personal video for a man named Mattias.

Read More

Mayim Bialik Will Host ‘Candid Camera’ Reboot

July 24, 2014 | By Ashley Baylen
Mayim Bialik Will Host ‘Candid Camera’ Reboot

The 'Big Bang Theory' star will be co-hosting alongside Peter Funt.

Read More

Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway' Stage Production is a Flop

July 24, 2014 | By Ashley Ramnarain
Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway' Stage Production is a Flop

The play will be closing its curtains after just five months

Read More

Seth Meyers May Have Started a Feud Between Louis C.K and Ricky Gervais

July 24, 2014 | By Ashley Ramnarain
Seth Meyers May Have Started a Feud Between Louis C.K and Ricky Gervais

Gervais and C.K are nominated in the same category at the upcoming Emmy awards

Read More

Before Songza, Google Tried to Buy Spotify

July 24, 2014 | By Shaleni McBain
Before Songza, Google Tried to Buy Spotify

The Internet giant backed off after Spotify asked for double its worth

Read More

More Headlines