A new petition to Parliament urges the Government to direct Super Fund to stop its investments in Jewish only settlements in the Occupied Palestine as soon as practicably possible- and to inquire into whether any other such investments exist.
Labour MP Duncan Webb will present the petition to the Parliament .
The timing of this petition is crucial, as Israel’s use of deadly force against unarmed civilians in Gaza has highlighted the need for the international community not to ignore Israel’s unlawful activities.
Israel continues to defy the international law by expanding Jewish settlements on the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT).
Even the United States, Israel’s closet ally, has condemned the expansion of these settlements but, every year, millions of dollars are poured into the expansion of existing settlements as well as creating new outposts in the Occupied Palestine.
These settlements are widely regarded as the biggest obstacle to peace as they clearly signal Israel’s unwillingness to return land that belongs to Palestinians.
It is important to recognize that nearly half of the West Bank falls under the settlement jurisdiction, which help define Palestinian freedom of movement and access to land and resources.
Despite the illegality of these settlements and their obstructing effect on the peace process, the New Zealand Superanuation Fund has invetsted millions of dollars in the four Israeli banks that fund the construction of these settlements.
These banks are: Bank Hapoalim, Bank Leumi, Mizrahi Tefahot and the First International Bank of Israel, each of which are banks domiciled in Israel and which, according to Human Rights Watch, fund Jewish settlements in Occupied Palestine including at Efrat, Beitar Illit, Alfei Menashi, Ariel, Elkana, Ma’aleh Adumin and Kiryat Arba.
At the time when Israel continues to murder Palestinians with complete impunity, it is essential for New Zealand to send a clear message to Israel that it must obide by the international law.
You can show your support by signing the petition here: