Attending the EIPA (Europe Israel Publc Affairs) conference in the EU Parliament, which was titled "Israel: include. Invest. Involve. 3 Is to counter B. D and S," MK Hilik Bar (Zionist Union) said, "The BDS is not a movement of protest against Israel. The BDS is wisely appealing to many young people, good people, naïve people with good intentions. And they are appealing to them with slogans that may charm them: Slogans about justice, peace and love.
"But the truth is, that it is a sophisticated way of hiding its true goal, which is the destruction of the state of Israel and the delegitimizing of its very right of Israel to exist.
"I'm highly committed to an Israeli-Palestinian peace, I'm leading the two-state-solution caucus at the Knesset, I belong to a very big majority of Israelis who advocates for two nation states for two people.
"But it is the BDS movement that has nothing to do with peace or with the efforts to create 2 states - nothing. On The contrary, the BDS movement essentially views the very fact of Israel’s creation
as the root cause of the problem.
"And since its activists’ chants frequently include the lines, 'From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free!', it is reasonable to assume that for the BDS Movement - no amount of territorial
disengagement would be enough to put an end to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, short of dismantling Israel itself.
"Ladies and gentlemen we don’t want BDS, we want dialogue. We don’t want to put distance between the two peoples, we want to bring them closer. In two states for two people, living peacefully next to each other. We don’t want hate, we seek for partnership, cooperation and peace.
"Most of the Israelis are committed to peace - I am committed to peace. Being Jewish and being an Israeli shaped my never ending desire for peace. Peace between us – and our neighbors. Peace that will replace fear, blood and tears, With respect, cooperation, and a better future for our children. Peace is always my first choice.
"BDS activities are profoundly counterproductive, and completely disruptive towards EU-Israeli relations AND towards Palestinian-Israeli peace. Casting an exceedingly negative influence
on the prospects of achieving a lasting peace in the region - BDS activity is profoundly counterproductive to peace.
"Involvement, cooperation, dialogue and openness should be our message. Closer diplomatic ties, regular cultural and scientific exchanges, promotion of free trade, Shared values of freedom, significantly amplified investments– this is the future.
"And we should create, together, exactly this kind of future – and we should do it against and despite the BDS movement and their partners – who's aim is to take us back to a very dark eras.
"Let’s work together, not to divest, not to close up, not to shut off one side or another. Let’s work together to BUILD BRIDGES. To build bridges for peace prosperity and security, for all the peoples in the Middle East - and here in Europe," Bar concluded.
The EIPA conference took place in cooperation with EJA and the Israeli Mission to the EU.