In a major blow to Israel’s war on Palestine solidarity, the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) ruled unanimously today that the French highest court’s 2015 criminal conviction of activists with the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement violated article 10 (freedom of expression) of the European Convention on Human Rights, the Palestinian BDS National Committee said in a press release.
In 2009 and 2010, eleven activists in France had participated in peaceful protests inside supermarkets calling for a boycott of Israeli goods in solidarity with the Palestinian struggle for freedom, justice, and equality. They were convicted by French courts of “incitement to discrimination.”
Reacting to the ECHR ruling, Rita Ahmad from the Palestinian-led BDS movement said:
“This momentous court ruling is a decisive victory for freedom of expression, for human rights defenders, and for the BDS movement for Palestinian freedom, justice and equality. It confirms a 2016 European Union position defending the right to call for BDS against Israel to achieve Palestinian rights under international law.”
“This is a major legal blow to Israel’s apartheid regime and its anti-BDS lawfare. At Israel’s behest, European governments, especially in France and Germany, have fostered an ominous environment of bullying and repression to silence Palestine solidarity activists,” Ahmad added.
The ECHR decision comes at a time of widespread condemnations of Israel’s plans to formally annex large swathes of the occupied Palestinian territory.
Source: The Palestine Chronicle