UK store boycotts illegal Israeli beauty products

The Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC) has welcomed the decision by British store John Lewis to stop stocking proucts manufactured in illegal Israeli settlements as “yet another victory for the growing Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement. A boycott of Ahava Dead Sea beauty products was confirmed by John Lewis’ Managing Director, Andy Street, who said his leading nationwide company was a “socially responsible retailer.” “We expect all our suppliers not only to obey the law, but also to respect the rights, interests and well-being of their employees, their communities and the environment,” Street said in a ltter to the PSC. “In relation to your specific enquiry about Ahava Dead Sea products, I can confirm that John Lewis has ceased stocking these particular products,” his letter said, according to a copy obtained by IRNA. PSC Director of Campaigns Sarah Colborne welcomed the boycott, saying that Israel’s continued attacks on the Palestinian population, its brutal blockade in Gaza and illegal occupation of the West Bank and East Jerusalem, has led to a “seismic shift in public opinion.” Ahava Dead Sea Laboratories, Colborne said, is an Israeli cosmetics company, with its manufacturing plant based in the illegal Israeli settlement of Mitzpe Shalem in the West Bank, which is “stolen Palestinian land.” “Its beauty products can’t conceal the role Ahava plays in Israel’s occupation. Ahava, and other companies profiting from Israel’s illegal occupation, are being sent a clear message by consumers who are refusing to buy their products,” she said. PSC criticised western governments, including the British, for failing to end Israeli violations of international law and human rights, but said the public was taking action by supporting the BDS movement for peace and justice for the Palestinians. The boycott comes after regular protests have been held outside Ahava shop in central London. The Bay stores, a leading department store chain in Canada, also announced it has stopped selling the illegal Israeli beauty products. IRNA