Trade unionists are to launch a boycott of Israeli goods as part of a major campaign to secure a peaceful settlement in the Middle East, Stormont heard today.Interesting to see that where Adams and Paisley stand on the boycott breaks down on settler/native lines with Paisley of course, covering for Israel. But even he couldn't find a good word to say about Israel.
The Irish Congress of Trade Unions (ICTU) launched a report on Israel and Palestine compiled by senior members who visited the troubled region.
As controversy continues to rage over the death toll in Gaza caused by the recent Israeli military attacks, trade union leaders announced they are to hold a major conference this year to act as a springboard for their campaign.
While the DUP dismissed the report as unbalanced and urged unions to concentrate on local economic issues, Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams who hosted the report's launch in Stormont's Long Gallery commended the trade unionists.
ICTU President Patricia McKeown led the Middle East visit that involved 11 senior members of the umbrella group representing trade unions across Ireland, including 36 trade unions with 250,948 members in Northern Ireland.
The delegation met Israeli trade unionists and politicians, plus Hamas political leaders, but said they were shocked by the conditions they found in Palestinian areas.
"I was profoundly shocked by what we found," said Ms McKeown.
"I didn't expect the denial of human rights and the discrimination to be so evident and to be an obvious part of daily life.
"To see unemployment on the West Bank rising to 80%, to see people having to get up at three in the morning, and virtually sleep outside the the army controlled crossings in order to get into work - that's something we didn't expect to see."
unfavorable perceptions of Israel around the world
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