Goods from illegal Israeli settlements should be banned, says TUC

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date: 10 December 2009

embargo: For immediate use

Commenting on the Government's advice to retailers on produce from illegal settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories issued today (Thursday), TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber said:

'The TUC welcomes the public clarification that marking produce from illegal settlements on occupied territory as 'produce of Israel' is against the law. Profiting from the goods produced in the illegal settlements is contrary to international law and they should be banned from sale in the European Union, as they are in Palestine. Trade in such goods undermines the viability of a sovereign Palestinian state and holds back the peace process.

'The Government should make it mandatory to label settlement goods and produce honestly, so that consumers have the information to choose not to buy the products of an illegal occupation. Hopefully UK supermarkets and retailers will treat their customers with respect and label goods openly and honestly.'

NOTES TO EDITORS:

- The DEFRA guidance is at http://www.defra.gov.uk/foodfarm/food/pdf/labelling-palestine.pdf

- The TUC's annual congress in Liverpool this September carried a General Council statement (http://www.tuc.org.uk/congress/tuc-16991-f0.cfm) calling for a ban on the importing of goods produced in the illegal settlements, and called for a consumer boycott of such products.

- All TUC press releases can be found at www.tuc.org.uk

- Register for the TUC's press extranet: a service exclusive to journalists wanting to access pre-embargo releases and reports from the TUC. Visit www.tuc.org.uk/pressextranet

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