House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (C) and Rep. Eliot Engel. (AP/J. Scott Applewhite) (AP/J. Scott Applewhite)
Royce Engel
GOP Iran deal

Rep. Peter Roskam. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

US Congress is again rallying to support Israel against boycotts, especially after the EU recently published guidelines that require the labeling of products made in Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria and the Golan Heights.

A bipartisan group of US Congressmen on Thursday introduced a resolution that strongly condemns the European Union’s (EU) guidelines which require that products made in Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria and the Golan Heights be specially labeled, singling them out for boycotts.

Democrats Eliot Engel, the chairman of the International Council of Jewish Parliamentarians, Nita Lowey, and Republicans Peter Roskam and Committee of Foreign Affairs Chairman Ed Royce initiated the resolution, stating that the labeling only spurred a general boycott of Israeli goods and was counterproductive in promoting the peace process.

“Not only does it harm the Israeli-Palestinian peace process and damage US national security interests, it also contributes to the anti-Israel BDS (Boycott, Divest, Sanctions) movement,” the resolution said.

It describes the BDS movement’s actions as “politically motivated” that single out Israel.

Nita Lowey

Rep. Nita Lowey. (AP/J. Scott Applewhite)

“The EU was established on the basic assumption the peace and security are best achieved via commerce, economical alliance and increased employment – not by boycott and isolation. The same assumption applies to Israelis and Palestinians.”

The resolution, which is expected to receive overwhelming bipartisan support, emphasized that the EU, which is Israel’s main source of trade, must play a helpful role in returning Israelis and Palestinians to the negotiating table.

In contrary, the BDS movement’s actions “represent a concerted effort to extract concessions from Israel outside of direct negotiations between the Israelis and Palestinians, and undermines efforts to achieve a negotiated two-state solution,” the resolution said.

The resolution pointed out that the US has traditionally opposed efforts to exert economic pressure on Israel and has in the past enacted legislation opposing boycotts by the Arab League and by BDS.

It also noted that several US states have already taken steps against BDS, including Tennessee, New York, California, Illinois, Indiana and North Carolina.

By: United with Israel Staff