US Law to Ban Discrimination Against Companies in Judea-Samaria
US lawmakers are to consider a bill banning the US government from funding any international projects which discriminate against Israelis in Judea and Samaria.
Republican Congressman Steve Stockman, who represents the 36th District of Texas, tabled the proposal, which "terminates US government funds for any international project that prohibits participation of Israeli organizations operating beyond the 1949 armistice line," according to a statement by his office.
The proposed law was submitted in response to what Stockman said amounted to anti-Israel discrimination by certain international institutions. He singled out the European Union and other European countries in particular, noting the double-standard they apply regarding projects in "occupied territories."
Stockman noted how the European countries shun Jewish communities and institutions in Judea and Samaria, whilst supporting projects in occupied north Cyprus and Nagorno-Karabakh. The EU works with companies in occupied Western Sahara, among other region which have raised eyebrows given the Union's statements concerning "Israeli settlements".
The congressman hit out at claims that Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria are illegal, or that Israel's presence there amounts to "occupation" at all, condemning the EU's decision last year to boycott Israeli entities in Judea and Samaria.
"In 1995, the Interim Agreement on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip (commonly referred to as the Oslo II Accord) formally divided Judea and Samaria into three administrative divisions, with Area C being under full Israeli civil and security control; therefore, foreign countries should not discriminate against Israeli organizations that operate there," the statement asserted.
Stockman also rejected the often-stated claim that Jewish settlement in Judea and Samaria contravenes the Fourth Geneva Convention, pointing out that "Israeli settlements in these territories do not violate Article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention. They are completely voluntary and do not involve 'individual or mass forcible transfers' prohibited by subpart (1) of Article 49."
"Hatred and discrimination shouldn’t be funded with American tax dollars," said Stockman. "Congress should stop funding actions that foster hatred of Israel and violate international agreements. We must never forget where this type of hatred always leads."