On March 19, Israeli tax officials entered the home of Omar Barghouti, the Palestinian human rights activist and co-founder of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement. In a blatant act of political harassment, continuing on years of threats, they interrogated him and his wife for hours that day and on the following days.
The International Jewish anti-Zionist Network condemns in the strongest terms this act of persecution, one intended to bully and repress the international campaign to sanction, pressure, and isolate Israel until it complies with Palestinian demands for the end of the occupation, equality for the Palestinian citizens of Israel, and the Right of Return for the Palestinian refugees.
Targeting Omar continues in a long line of threats, including calls for his assassination – or “civil elimination” in the language of Israeli ministers. Omar is currently under a travel ban as a result of the interrogation. Clearly, this is meant to damage his image in the international arena, and by extension, blight the appearance of the international movement. It also comes shortly before he was scheduled to travel to receive an international prize in recognition of his work resisting Israeli racism.
IJAN recognizes that this latest Israeli provocation is an attempt to slow down the rising movement to isolate Israel, which has gained international traction and is beginning to yield real fruit. The Israeli government has in turn poured massive amounts of resources into efforts to damage BDS – hundreds of millions, according to what it has publicly admitted.
Targeting Omar through this open attempt at destroying his reputation will not stop the grassroots attempt to isolate Israel and force it to cease its political repression against the Palestinian people. In his words, the response can only be “More BDS!” IJAN is proud to support this ongoing campaign for justice and return. We add our voices to those standing by Omar and his relentless work on BDS and an end to Israel’s colonial impunity.