The National Jewish Assembly (NJA) commends the announcement made by Business Secretary Kemi Badenoch at the Israeli Embassy’s “Israel 75” event, stating that public bodies will be prohibited from engaging in boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) activities against Israel. The NJA wholeheartedly supports this decision, which upholds the principles of fairness, cooperation, and strong bilateral relations between Israel and the United Kingdom.
During her address to a distinguished audience, including government ministers and ambassadors, Badenoch emphasised the deep bond and historical ties between Israel and the UK. The NJA appreciates Badenoch’s commitment to strengthening ties through a new UK-Israel free trade agreement, creating vast opportunities in financial services, technology, and infrastructure.
The BDS movement poses a dangerous threat as it seeks to undermine the legitimacy of Israel and perpetuate a one-sided narrative of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. BDS operates on a flawed premise by unfairly singling out Israel, ignoring the complexities and nuances of the region’s history and ongoing challenges. This movement not only seeks to economically isolate Israel but also aims to delegitimise its very existence as a sovereign nation.
By promoting boycotts, divestments, and sanctions, BDS fuels division, perpetuates hatred, and hinders any meaningful dialogue or progress towards peace. The NJA recognises the dangers of BDS and stands firm against efforts to delegitimise Israel – whilst supporting dialogue, understanding, and cooperation as the path to achieving a peaceful and just resolution in the region.
The NJA applauds this decisive action taken by Business Secretary Kemi Badenoch, recognising the detrimental impact of BDS campaigns on bilateral relations and the pursuit of peace. By banning public bodies, including universities and local authorities, from engaging in BDS activities, the UK Government sends a clear message against discrimination and supports a fair and balanced approach to international relations.