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Irish Senate approves bill boycotting Israeli settlement goods, Foreign Ministry applauds decision

July 12, 2018 11:29 A.M. (Updated: July 17, 2018 1:37 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- The Irish Senate has voted in favor of a bill prohibiting the importation and sale of goods and services originating in illegal Israeli settlements on Wednesday evening.

The Control of Economic Activities (occupied territories) Bill 2018 seeks to prohibit the import and sale of goods, services and natural resources originating in illegal settlements in occupied Palestine.

In order to become law, the bill still must pass through several obstacles. However, if passed, Ireland would become the first European country to ban settlement goods.

The Irish Senators voted in favor of the bill, with 25 votes in favor, 20 against and 14 abstentions.

The bill still needs to be debated and voted on in the Irish Parliament’s Lower House; a step expected to take months.

The Irish government made its opposition clear by saying there should be a common EU response to this matter.

The Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs praised the Irish Senate for the decision, "that many other countries have avoided to make for years", despite previous resolutions to label products from illegal Israeli settlements according to the 2015 EU regulations.

The ministry expressed its hope that when the bill passes into law, Ireland will abide by its decision in the interest of justice and international law and that "the principle of accountability must apply to Israel and its colonial settlement system."

Meanwhile, Israel’s Foreign Ministry criticized the Irish Senate for supporting an extremist anti-boycott initiative.
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