Following a Major Success in our #BoycottHP Campaign, We Call for Escalation
Despite a major success in our #BoycottHP campaign, the BDS movement calls for escalating the boycott following revelations implicating HP in Israel’s brutal prison and policing system.
Who Profits, an independent research organization tracking corporate complicity in Israel’s occupation, has confirmed that HP Enterprise (HPE) continues to provide services to Israeli prisons and police despite its full knowledge of the grave human rights violations perpetrated by both. This means HP remains complicit in apartheid.
On the other hand, HPE’s contract providing servers for the computerization of Israel’s population database, known as Aviv System, has come to an end, according to a recent Who Profits report. This achievement comes on the heels of over a decade of effective campaigning against HP by solidarity groups, churches, unions and progressive city councils across the world.
While we celebrate this milestone in our Boycott HP campaign, affirming the unmistakable global grassroots and civil society shift in favour of Palestinian liberation and against Israeli apartheid, we call for escalating our BDS campaigns (including divestment) against HP-branded companies following recent revelations of their ongoing complicity in Israeli apartheid and military occupation.
2021 was a year of growing global recognition that Israel is an apartheid state and of the need to dismantle its regime of racist domination, as was done with apartheid South Africa. Thanks to strong, strategic and sustained BDS campaigning, multinationals that have enabled and profited from Israeli apartheid are paying a dear price for their complicity, with major players pulling out their business as a result.
Who Profits’ report shows that HPE is being phased out of the Aviv System contract. This database, which includes Palestinian citizens and residents of Israel (mainly in occupied East Jerusalem), has facilitated Israel’s efforts to ethnically cleanse and colonize Sheikh Jarrah, Silwan and other Palestinian neighbourhoods in occupied Jerusalem. By including the so-called Yesha database of Israel’s settler population, the database has also enabled the expansion of illegal Israeli settlements.
Still, HP remains deeply complicit in Israel’s grave human rights violations. As Who Profits reports, “In 2020, [HPE] was contracted to provide computer and communication maintenance for Israel Prison Service for 2021-2022 for the amount of over NIS 1 Million (>300,000 USD)”. It has also been contracted to maintain servers for Israel Police until 2023 for >1 million USD.
More than 500 Palestinian administrative detainees have called for a boycott of Israeli military courts and are mobilizing against this illegal policy. We are escalating our campaign against HP as part of our commitment to the just demands of the Palestinian administrative detainees and other political prisoners in apartheid Israel’s dungeons.
The Boycott HP campaign has been a vibrant global campaign with support from major trade unions representing millions of members, including the UK’s second-largest Unite the Union and the Netherlands’ largest trade union federation Federatie Nederlandse Vakbeweging (FNV). Support for the campaign also came from large student groups, including the largest students federation of India SFI with its 4 million members.
Churches have been at the forefront of the Boycott HP campaign, declaring themselves HP Free as well as divesting from the HP-branded companies. These include the United Church of Christ (US), Presbyterian Church USA, Friends Fiduciary Corporation, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, and the Unitarian Universalist Association.
The city councils of Dublin in Ireland and Portland and Oregon in the US have also divested from HP companies over their involvement in human rights violations. From shop pickets to global days of action, BDS campaigners have relentlessly demanded an end to all HP contracts with apartheid Israel, and have shown what collective, resilient grassroots organizing can achieve against greedy, criminal corporate giants.
We are inspired by the heroic resilience of Palestinian political prisoners and by the growing strength of the global BDS movement to reinvigorate our boycott and divestment campaigns against HPE. Let us teach HP, and through it all corporate criminals, that profiting from war crimes and human rights violations comes at a steep price.