Norway's largest pension fund divests from companies tied to Judea & Samaria

Move, which includes excluding major players such as Motorola, called "sheer bias" and tacit acceptance of BDS by human rights lawyer.

Dan Verbin ,

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The largest pension fund in Norway announced on Monday that it was divesting from 16 companies over ties to communities in Judea and Samaria.

In a statement titled “Decision to exclude companies with links to Israeli settlements in the West Bank”
KLP said that effective immediately is had decided to remove the 16 companies from its investment
portfolios as part of a “due diligence-based divestment.”

“In KLP’s assessment, there is an unacceptable risk that the excluded companies are contributing to
the abuse of human rights in situations of war and conflict through their links with the Israeli
settlements in the occupied West Bank,” the fund said.

The action follows a previous May divestment by KLP of two companies it said were linked to construction and real estate in Judea and Samaria, reported Reuters.

International human rights lawyer Arsen Ostrovsky called KLP's move "sheer bias" and said that the fund was giving cover to the BDS movement.

"We know Norway is accustomed to cold weather, but (it is) seemingly freezing towards Jews as well," he tweeted. "An act of sheer bias, Jewish discrimination and acquiescence to the racist BDS Movement against Israel here. Shameful!"

KLP stated that it had sold $31.81 million worth of shares in the 16 companies, including bond holdings in Motorola and Alstrom.

The other companies were: Bank Hapoalim, Israel Discount Bank, Mizrahi Tefahot Bank, Delek Group, Energix Renewable Energies, First International Bank of Israel and Partner Communications.

“KLP has considered whether the companies’ links to and operations in the West Bank could constitute an unacceptable risk of violating KLP’s guidelines, including contributing to human rights abuses and serious violations of the rights of the individual in situations of war and conflict,” said the fund.

The fund’s report lists “sectors with excluded companies.” These include banks, building, construction and engineering services, the telecom sector, integrated oil and gas, renewable energy, oil and gas refining, and tech hardware.



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