Sweden denies Israeli claim that it opposes BDS

 Despite claims in the news that Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallström in Stockholm had agreed to publicly denounce the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement, we now have a clarification from authentic sources as reported in the Electronic Intifada.

The Swedish Foreign Ministry has denied that Foreign Minister Margot Wallström has promised to publicly denounce the Palestinian-led boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement.


Electronic Intifada’s report points out that Wallström met with Tzipi Livni but the Swedish foreign ministry is contesting the characterizations of what it called a “private conversation.”

“Sweden stands by a two-state solution,” the foreign minister’s spokesperson wrote in an email to The Electronic Intifada on Wednesday, in response to an inquiry about the accuracy of the Israeli media reports.

“As regards BDS, it is a civil society movement. Governments should not interfere in civil society organization views,” the spokesperson added.

By acknowledging the legitimacy and independence of the BDS movement as a civil society phenomenon, Sweden is setting itself apart from other Europeans governments.

The report from Electronic Intifada points out that “in recent months, Wallström generated so much Israeli hostility for taking basic positions in support of Palestinian human rights that her security officials had to investigate apparent death threats directed against her in Israeli media”.

It may be recalled that “Wallström had enraged Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu by calling for an investigation into Israel’s practice of summarily executing Palestinian youths alleged to have carried out attacks on Israeli occupation forces, settlers or civilians”.

Her unwillingness to submit to Israeli bullying over BDS is an example that her counterparts around the world should emulate, says Electronic Intifada writer, Ali Abunimah.

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