After speaking today at an event at Sydney University about the academic and cultural boycott of Israel – there is deep support for the movement but also profound denial by many Zionists, unable to understand that “democratic” Israel should be targeted – this is welcome news:
The Brazilian Parliamentary Commission on Foreign Relations and National Defense has recommended that the parliament should not ratify the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between Mercosur and the State of Israel until “Israel accepts the creation of the Palestinian state on the 1967 borders”. This decision is an explicit act of pressure on Israel to comply with international law, and a rejection of years of incessant Israeli lobbying, pressuring for a vote to ratify the agreement.
This decision is an enormous blow for Israel’s economy and foreign relations. It poses a massive stumbling block for the enactment of the agreement, which since its signing in 2007, has been stalled due to a lack of ratification by Mercosur member countries. The Mercosur is one of the world’s most quickly expanding markets and the fifth largest economy in the world. Israeli exports to the Mercosur amounted nearly 600 million dollars in 2006.