Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) is a Palestinian-led, global movement for freedom, justice and equality. BDS upholds the simple principle that Palestinians are entitled to the same rights as the rest of humanity.
BDS is inspired and inspiring. It draws inspiration from decades of Palestinian popular resistance, from the South African anti-apartheid struggle, from the US Civil Rights movement, among other others. It inspires Palestinians and supporters of Palestinian rights worldwide to speak truth to power, to challenge hegemonic, racist power structures and to assert that Palestinian rights must be respected and implemented.
Israel is occupying and colonizing Palestinian land, discriminating against Palestinian citizens of Israel and denying Palestinian refugees the right to return to their homes. It is maintaining a regime of occupation, settler-colonialism and apartheid over the Palestinian people.
World governments fail to hold Israel to account. Companies and institutions help Israel to oppress Palestinians. In response, Palestinians are calling for nonviolent grassroots boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) campaigning against Israel.
Inspired by the South African anti-apartheid movement, the BDS call urges action to pressure Israel to comply with international law by:
1. Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands and dismantling the Wall. International law recognizes the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, Gaza and the Syrian Golan Heights as occupied by Israel.
2. Granting Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel their right to full equality
3. Respecting, protecting and promoting the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in UN resolution 194
Ten years since its launch, BDS is now widely supported by unions, academic associations, churches and movements across the world.
As a result of BDS pressure, major companies, such as Veolia, Orange and CRH are withdrawing from the Israeli market after following campaigns over their involvement in Israeli projects that violate international law. The UN and the World Bank say that BDS is starting to have a significant economic impact. Thousands of artists including major celebrities like Roger Waters and Lauryn Hill now refuse to play in Israel.
Israel is increasingly worried that the BDS movement is making it a pariah state in the way that South Africa once was.
To learn more see www.bdsmovement.com