Dutch pension giant divests from Israeli banks

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PostFri Jan 10, 2014 4:04 am » by Opalserpent

http://electronicintifada.net/blogs/asa ... aeli-banks

Most Israeli banks have branches in illegal West Banks settlements.

Dutch pension fund PGGM announced on the front page of its website today that it had withdrawn tens of millions of Euros worth of investments from five Israeli banks.

The fund cited the banks’ unethical and illegal practices in the West Bank.

PGGM said in statement that it had been in discussions with Bank Hapoalim, Bank Leumi, the First International Bank of Israel, the Israel Discount Bank and Mizrahi Tefahot Bank for several years.

The fund had tried to convince them to reconsider their financial backing for Israel’s West Bank settlements which “are considered illegal under international humanitarian law” – but to no avail.

In the 2011 book that I edited with Frank Barat, Mirav Amir of Who Profits showed that “There is solid evidence of the involvement of most of the major Israeli commercial banks” in a long list of financial services to settlements. These include “special loans” made with the explicit purpose of encouraging Israeli colonization of Palestinian land in the West Bank.

Indeed, Amir said, “most Israeli banks” have branches open in settlements. This is another example of how Israel has erased the 1949 “Green Line” ceasefire boundary, and rules the entire historic land of Palestine de facto as one state – an apartheid state where half of the population has no say.

In November, after a sustained BDS campaign, the US pension fund TIAA-CREF divested over $1.2 million worth of shares in French firm Veolia. The company provides infrastructure and transport services to illegal Israeli settlements.

In June 2012, Norway excluded Israel’s largest real estate firm from its government pension fund, also citing settlements.


Live by the Terror, Die by the Terror.

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