Apartheid Free Zone Campaign in Italy Has Grown by 50 Percent Since Launch in June
150 commercial, cultural and sporting activities in Italy have declared themselves free of Israeli apartheid
The Italian network of Apartheid Free Zones (Spazi Liberi dall’Apartheid Israeliana - SPLAI) continues to grow. SPLAI now includes 150 associations, trade unions, movements, artisans, commercial activities and cultural and sports centersthat have taken a stand for human rights and against all forms of discrimination, in solidarity with Palestinian struggle for freedom, justice and equality [List of endorsers].
Members of the SPLAI network refuse ties with institutions and companies involved in violations of international law and that support Israel’s policies that discriminate against Palestinians and deny their basic human rights.
Launched in June this year, the SPLAI network has grown by 50 percent in just a few months, reflecting a determination not to remain silent in the face of injustice, oppression, violence and racism, wherever it occurs.
The Apartheid Free Zone campaign is already present in several countries, including Belgium, Norway and the Spanish State, with more than three hundred endorsers, including dozens of local administrations.
Volere la Luna, a laboratory of political culture and good practices founded by retired magistrate Livio Pepino, historian Marco Revelli, among others, commented:
"Volere la Luna endorses SPLAI because we strongly believe in the boycott of complicit Israeli institutions as a means for nonviolent struggle for the fundamental rights of the Palestinian people."
The Askavusa collective of the Sicilian island of Lampedusa where migrant boats often land, said:
"As Askavusa Lampedusa, we join the SPLAI campaign. No one should be deprived of their freedom of movement, no one should be blocked at a border. We support the right of Palestinian refugees to return to their land. Israel’s apartheid wall must fall."
The ARCI social center Thomas Sankara of Messina stated:
"For 19 years, our anti-racist practices have been bound together with solidarity with the Palestinian people. We have sought to tell the story of Palestine, through the voice of the Palestinian refugees but also that of Israeli dissidents. We join the SPLAI campaign because the boycott is the only weapon we will hold against the genocide taking place in Palestine."
In a video supporting the campaign, Jewish playwright Moni Ovadia said:
"It is time to make the voice of the righteous heard on the question of Palestinian, neglected in a vile and hypocritical way by the entire international community."
The Apartheid Free Zone campaign is part of the international movement for Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) against Israeli apartheid. Established in 2005 by over 170 Palestinian civil society organizations, the BDS movement practices nonviolent resistance to end Israel’s policies of occupation, colonization and apartheid.
The BDS movement is supported by trade unions, movements, churches and NGOs around the world as well as artists and intellectuals, including Ken Loach, Roger Waters and South African archbishop and Nobel Peace Prize winner Desmond Tutu.
Inspired by the historic struggle for the abolition of apartheid in South Africa, the BDS movement is based on respect for international law and the protection of universal human rights, and supports equal rights for all. The BDS movements strongly opposes all forms of racism, fascism, sexism, anti-Semitism, Islamophobia, ethnic and religious discrimination.
For more information: bdsitalia.org/splai