2021 Round Up: 21 successes for the Palestinian liberation struggle

We shall remember 2021 for years to come as the year Israel’s designation as an apartheid state started to mainstream. Despite Israel’s intensified massacres and ethnic cleansing of Indigenous Palestinian communities, solidarity with our liberation struggle was simply unprecedented in 2021. 


Here are 21 highlights of this unprecedented solidarity:

  1. A groundbreaking report by Human Rights Watch detailed how Israel’s policies against Palestinians amounts to the crimes against humanity of persecution and apartheid. Earlier this year, Israel’s largest human rights organization, B’Tselem, had reached the same conclusion in its report titled: “This is apartheid: The Israeli regime promotes and perpetuates Jewish supremacy between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River.”

  2. Ten former presidents, and more than 700 members of parliament, mayors, cultural figures and academics from Latin America, Asia and Africa, called on the UN to condemn Israel as an apartheid State and to impose lawful sanctions on it. 

  3. Norway's largest pension fund KLP excluded 16 companies because of their complicity in Israel’s illegal settlements and human rights abuses. 

  4. At its latest conference, the British Labour Party overwhelmingly condemned Israel as an apartheid state and called for sanctions against it.

  5. The Canadian Labour Congress (CLC) endorsed a ban on settlement goods, promoting divestment from Israeli military and security companies, and calling on Canada to impose a #MilitaryEmbargo on Israel. Also, 39 labour organizations, representing hundreds of thousands of workers across Canada, urged Justin Trudeau’s government to immediately suspend military trade with Israel.

  6. ​​Ben & Jerry’s announced it will not renew its licensing agreement with its Israeli licensee and will end sales of its ice cream in Israel's illegal settlements on stolen Palestinian land.

  7. Norges Bank, which manages the world's largest pension fund, excluded three companies involved in Israel's colonial system and apartheid – (Elco Ltd.), (Ashtrom Group Ltd) and (Electra Ltd) – following campaigning by BDS partners in Norway, particularly trade unions.

  8. Lothian Pension Fund, Scotland’s second largest local authority pension fund, with 84,000 members and £8 billion in assets, divested from Israeli Bank Hapoalim.

  9. The Irish government became the first in the EU to declare Israel’s illegal settlements on occupied Palestinian land a “de facto annexation.”

  10. Chile’s parliament introduced a bill to ban import of Israeli goods from illegal settlements. 

  11. Thousands of artists and cultural figures – including Hollywood stars, leading musicians, visionary contemporary artists, acclaimed authors and many more – endorsed disengagement from apartheid Israel’s complicit cultural sector.

  12. Nearly 30 partners in 13 cities on four continents organized Queer Cinema for Palestine, a precedent-setting queer film festival that rejects apartheid Israel’s pinkwashing. More than 200 queer filmmakers have pledged not to participate in Israeli government-sponsored events.

  13. Over 350 academic departments, centres, unions, and societies worldwide, along with 23,000 academics, students, and university staff, declared support of Palestinian rights, with many calling for BDS. The Student Association of the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva became the first student association in Switzerland to endorse BDS and to declare itself an Apartheid Free Zone (AFZ).

  14. The University of Brasilia and the University of Costa Rica passed historic resolutions declaring they will have no ties with companies complicit in Israel’s regime of military occupation, colonialism, and apartheid.

  15. The City University of New York (CUNY) staff congress, representing 30,000 members, condemned Israel as a settler-colonial and apartheid state. The Board and Staff Editors of the N.Y.U. Review of Law & Social Change voted to support the BDS movement and the boycott of complicit Israeli academic institutions in particular. 

  16. More than 130 Mexican civil rights organizations demanded that CEMEX end its complicity with Israeli apartheid. 

  17. East Sussex Pension Fund divested from Elbit Systems, Israel’s largest private arms manufacturer. 

  18. Centre International De Solidarité Ouvrière (CISO), a major coalition of 60+ Quebec labour unions and civil society groups, unanimously endorsed BDS and urged the Canadian government to designate Israel as an apartheid state.  

  19. In its annual convention, the Episcopal Church of Vermont stood up loudly against Israel’s U.S.-backed oppression of the Palestinians, condemning by an 89-25 majority Israeli apartheid policies.

  20. The “friendly” football match between FC Barcelona and racist Israeli club Beitar Jerusalem, known for its fans’ “death to Arabs” chants, was cancelled. Premier league Qatar Sports Club pledged not to renew with PUMA amid calls for boycotting PUMA due to its complicity with Israeli apartheid. Unprecedented numbers of star athletes courageously expressed their solidarity with the Palestinian struggle against apartheid in stadiums and to millions of followers on social media. 

  21. Finnish MP Veronika Honkassalo submitted a bill to parliament to ban importing any goods produced in illegal Israeli settlements.

Thanks to your support, our BDS movement for freedom, justice and equality continued to grow in reach and impact in 2021.


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