Settlements are not a victimless crime
Israeli settlements are villages, towns and cities built illegally on Palestinian land. With the continual building of more and more settlements Israel is building Palestine out of existence.
Settlements and their residents live under the protection of the Israeli forces: Palestinians are not allowed in. They are kept at bay by checkpoints, razor wire and heavily armed soldiers. Settlements often take the water resources on which the local Palestinian populations would have relied. Settlements are serviced by a system of segregated roads that Palestinians are not allowed even to take their cars on.
The UK Government calls Israeli settlements illegal and a barrier to peace. And yet in spite of their words, they have taken no action. We are campaigning, with partners in Palestine and the UK, to demand the UK government takes decisive and effective action against Israel in order to stop the continual building of illegal settlements.
Latest news and events
What are Israeli Settlements?
Israeli settlements are villages, towns and cities built illegally on Palestinian land. In order to build settlements, Palestinians are forced off their land and their homes are often demolished. In their place, Israel continues to build new neighbourhoods in which Palestinians are not allowed to live, and a separate road system that Palestinians are not allowed to use.
Palestinians and Israelis live under separate legal systems, with Palestinians subject to military, rather than civilian law.
Settlements are one of the clearest examples of Israel’s unwillingness to abide by international law. Also,by preventing the creation of a Palestinian state, they help delay any possibility of a just peace in Palestine.
What are the consequences of Israeli settlements?
Although the building of Israeli homes and communities sounds innocuous, in reality, their construction causes great suffering to Palestinians. Settlements are one part of a broader system of military occupation and colonial rule. Israel’s military occupation is colonial because it denies Palestinians the right to rule themselves democratically and to collectively determine their future. The settlements, and the military occupation that supports and facilitates their growth, are illegal, a barrier to peace and have a profound negative impact on the daily life of Palestinians.Israel's Separation Wall and the Infrastructure of Occupation
What is the UK's position?
Whilst the UK Government recognises Israeli settlements to be “illegal and a barrier to peace”, the UK continues to provide substantial support to settlements. Much of the Israeli agricultural produce sold in the UK is grown in illegal Israeli settlements and benefits from preferential trade agreements with the UK. Meanwhile, companies and charities registered in the UK do business in settlements, sending money in support of projects that expand and entrench Israeli domination.
It is time to bring the UK’s policy in line with its objectives. A number of prominent organisations have called on the UK Government to implement a ban on settlement produce and take measures to end the UK’s complicity with settlements.
What are we doing about this and how can you get involved?
We are campaigning, with partners in Palestine and the UK, to demand the UK government takes decisive and effective action against Israel in order to stop the continual building of illegal settlements. We are talking to politicians and building alliances, and asking you to do the same. So far, over eight thousand of you have written to your MPs asking for them to take action to stop the demolition of two Palestinian villages. We will be updating this page with actions you can take as the campaign develops so look out for new ways to get involved, if you haven’t already, you can sign up to our mailing list to make sure you stay up to date.
We are also taking on the companies from the occupation, such as Hewlett Packard (HP), one of the main suppliers of IT systems equipment and services to the Israeli military and security sectors, and to some settlements. We have set up a Stop HP website with information about why you should boycott HP, updates on the campaign and an activist toolkit to help you with your campaigning.
There are plenty of other ways you can get involved including, but not limited to:
- Join PSC and get active in your local branch
- Arrange a meeting with your MP to discuss this issue, resources to help you with this will be on this webpage
- Share this page with your friends