People Before Profit TD Gino Kenny has said that he was shocked by the “dismissive attitude” of Tánaiste Simon Coveney to any prospect of the future Government passing a proposed bill that would ban trade in goods from illegal Israeli settlements in Palestine.
The Bill proposed by Independent Senator Francis Black enjoys majority Dáil support with both Fianna Fáil and the Green Party voting for it in the last Dáil. It was blocked by the Fine Gael government.
Last night Gino Kenny TD questioned the Tánaiste on Israeli plans to annex the Jordan Valley which makes up a substantial part of the West Bank, a move he said was not only illegal but would inflame the whole Middle East. The TD drew comparisons with the Israeli State’s treatment of Palestinians and the US States racism against African Americans. He asked the Tánaiste if the future Government would include support for the proposed bill. The Tánaiste flatly rejected the proposed saying, “No, I won’t”.
Speaking today the People Before Profit TD appealed to the Green Party to commit to supporting the Bill in the Dáil.
He said: “The weak response of Ireland and the EU to the ongoing violence, racism and colonial mentality of Israel is shocking. This Bill would make Ireland a leader in defending Palestinians right to exist and live in their own land. The inaction of the Fine Gael government in challenging the Israeli illegal occupation and now proposed annexation is a stain on Ireland’s human rights record.
“Along with other TDs and Senators I want to make it clear that Senator Black’s Bill will be reintroduced to the Oireachtas, and the Green Party will be asked to support it and support the rights of the Palestinian people, they need to make clear that they will place that moral imperative ahead of any desire for ministerial office.”