Monday, January 13, 2014

understanding bds


bdsmovement |  The broad consensus among Palestinian civil society about the need for a broad and sustained Campaign for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) resulted in the Palestinian Call for boycott, divestment and sanctions against Israel that was launched in July 2005 with the initial endorsement of over 170 Palestinian organizations. The signatories to this call represent the three major components of the Palestinian people: the refugees in exile, Palestinians under occupation in the West Bank and Gaza Strip and the discriminated Palestinian citizens of the Israeli state.
The efforts to coordinate the BDS campaign, that began to grow rapidly since the 2005 Call was made public, culminated in the first Palestinian BDS Conference held in Ramallah in November 2007. Out of this conference emerged the BDS National Committee (BNC) as the Palestinian coordinating body for the BDS campaign worldwide.
The BNC’s mandate and role is:
• To strengthen and spread the culture of boycott as a central form of civil resistance to Israeli occupation, colonialism and apartheid;
• To formulate strategies and programs of action in accordance with the 9 July 2005 Palestinian Civil Society BDS Call;
• To serve as the Palestinian reference point for BDS campaigns in the region and worldwide;
• To serve as the national reference point for anti-normalization campaigns within Palestine;
• To facilitate coordination and provide support & encouragement to the various BDS campaign efforts in all locations.
The BNC’s main activities include:
• Campaigning with BDS activists locally and worldwide by preparing and disseminating BNC statements; public speaking; organizing the annual Global BDS Action Day on 30 March (Palestinian Land Day);
• Advocacy by briefing and lobbying policy makers;
• Monitoring & Rapid Response by means of BNC calls for action against projects and initiatives which amount to recognition of or cooperation with Israel’s regime of apartheid, colonialism and occupation (i.e., normalization);
• Media Outreach in Palestine and abroad, based on a professional media strategy;
• Coordination with BDS activists locally and worldwide, including preparation of regional and international organizing meetings and conferences;
• Awareness Raising & Training activists and organizations about BNC analysis, standards and BDS campaign work; through workshops, BNC information materials and the BDS campaign website (www.bdsmovement.net)
• Developing the BDS Campaign in Arab countries;
• Research and BDS Strategy Development.