Ben & Jerry’s is Selling Ice Cream in Israel’s Illegal Settlements in Palestine

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  Don't Occupy Palestine

Organizations Worldwide Sign a Letter Urging Ben & Jerry’s to Honor its Social Mission

They call on Ben & Jerry’s to end its complicity in Israel’s occupation and illegal settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem

Jostein Solheim, CEO
Ben & Jerry’s
30 Community Drive
South Burlington, Vermont 05403-6828

September 9, 2013

Dear CEO Solheim:

Ben & Jerry's has long advocated for peace and human rights. Your Social Mission articulates a commitment to the welfare, security and dignity of all communities, local, national and international. And yet Ben & Jerry products are being sold in illegal Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem. Their existence is predicated on systematic repression, racial segregation, land dispossession, the unlawful expropriation of water, and pervasive violence against Palestinians.

We who have signed this letter share a commitment to international law and human rights principles. Therefore, we are writing to urge Ben & Jerry's to stand by its Social Mission and to ensure that its products are not sold, catered and distributed in Israeli settlements. Taking this action would help to expose the devastating consequences and illegality of Israel's settlement enterprise. It would also set a powerful example of socially responsible engagement in Israel/Palestine for other companies to emulate.

The call for companies to cease doing business in the occupied Palestinian Territory (oPt) has had tremendous success throughout Europe and is growing on American college campuses nationwide. The call has been echoed in the United Nations and supported by mainline Protestant denominations in the United States and Canada.

In January, a United Nations' fact-finding mission issued a report calling on private companies doing business in Israeli settlements "to assess the human rights impact of their activities and take all necessary steps – including by terminating their business interests in the settlements – to ensure they are not adversely impacting the human rights of the Palestinian People in conformity with international law as well as the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights."

In May, 2012, the United Methodist Church passed a resolution denouncing Israel's occupation and settlements, and beseeching "all nations to prohibit the import of products made by companies in Israeli settlements on Palestinian land." Shortly thereafter, in July 2012, the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA) overwhelmingly passed a resolution calling for " the boycott of all Israeli products coming from the occupied Palestinian territories". The rationale for the resolution noted that "Since the occupation of the Palestinian territories in 1967, Israel has used its military rule to the advantage of Israeli corporations and economic interests, many times to the detriment of the Palestinian economy under its control. "

Although Ben & Jerry's Israeli franchise is not manufacturing ice cream in the settlements, by selling to settlement venues it is a corporate beneficiary of Israel's military and economic domination of the oPt.

We cannot reconcile Ben & Jerry's Social Mission and support of progressive causes with your franchise's commerce in Israeli settlements. Thus, consistent with international law and Ben & Jerry's Social Mission, we call on you to take all necessary contractual and legal measures to bring your franchise's settlement business to an end in a verifiable way, and to release a public statement of your company's commitment to end its business ties to Israel’s occupation and settlement enterprise.

Signed,


1 14 Friends of Palestine, Marin. - San Rafael, California
2 ACAT France (Action des Chrétiens pour l'Abolition de la Torture/Christian Action for the Abolition of Torture) - Paris, France
3 Action Group at KTH for Academic Boycott of Israel (Sweden)
4 American Friends Service Committee. - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
5 American Friends Service Committee-Iowa. - Des Moines, Iowa
6 American Jews for a Just Peace. - Boston, Massachusetts
7 American Muslims for Palestine. - Palos Hills, Illinois
8 American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee. - Washington, D.C.
9 Americans Committed to Justice and Truth , Oregon
10 Americans for a Just Peace in the Middle East. - Santa Barbara, California
11 Americans United for Palestinian Human Rights. - Portland, Oregon
12 Artists Against Apartheid. - artistsagainstapartheid.org
13 Auckland University Students for Justice in Palestine. - New Zealand
14 Bay Area Women in Black. - Oakland, California
15 BDS Slovenia. - Slovenia
16 BDS South Africa. - South Africa
17 BDS-LA for Justice in Palestine. - Los Angeles, California
18 Boycott From Within. - Israel
19 Brooklyn College Students for Justice in Palestine. - Brooklyn, New York
20 Brooklyn for Peace. - Brooklyn, New York
21 Bryn Mawr Peace Coalition, Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania
22 Building More Future Opportunities and Capacities (BMFOCA) Foundation. Ilorin, Kwara, Nigeria
23 Campagne BDS France [French BDS Campaign](France)
24 Carlisle Peace College. - Pennslyvania
25 Chicago Divests. - Chicago, Illinois
26 Chicago Faith Coalition on Middle East Policy. - Chicago, Illinois
27 Chico Palestine Action Group, Chico, California
28 Christians Witnessing for Palestine. - Rochester, New York
29 Christ's Way Church. - Portland, Oregon
30 Citizens for Justice in the Middle East. - Kansas City, Missouri
31 Citizens for Palestinian Self-Determination, Lincoln, Nebraska
32 Clark University Students for Palestinian Rights. - Worcester, Massachusetts
33 Coalition for Peace with Justice. - Chapel Hill, North Carolina
34 Coalition to Stop $30 Billion to Israel. - Albuquerque, New Mexico
35 Code Pink Peace. - Phoenix, Arizona
36 Code Pink Taos. - Taos, New Mexico
37 Code Pink, Los Angeles, CA
38 Code Pink, San Francisco, CA
39 Code Pink, Washington, D.C.
40 CodePink,Washington State
41 CodePink,Washington State - Quilcene, WA
42 CodePinkHayward - Hayward, California
43 CodePinkTennessee Summertown, TN
44 Collectif 69 de Soutien au Peuple Palestinien [The '69 Collective' Supporting the People of Palestine] (Lyon, France)
45 Collectif Judéo Arabe et Citoyen pour la Palestine [Alliance of Arabs, Jews and Citizens for Palestine](Strasbourg-France)
46 Colorado Coalition Against Attacking Iran, Boulder, CO
47 Committee for a Just Peace in Israel and Palestine. - Oak Park, Illinois
48 Committee for Open Discussion of Zionism (CODZ), New York, NY, USA
49 Committee for Palestinian Rights (Howard County, MD). - Columbia, Maryland
50 Committee for Peace in Israel and Palestine. - Connecticut/New York
51 Cornell Students for Justice in Palestine. - Ithaca, New York
52 Council for the National Interest, McLean, VA
53 Culture and Conflict Forum, SAN JOSE, California, USA
54 DC Statehood Green Party. - Washington, D.C.
55 Delaware Neighbors Against the Occupation (DelNATO), Wilmington, DE
56 Dorchester People for Peace. - Boston, Massachusetts
57 Episcopal Bishop's Committee for Israel/Palestine. - Seattle, Washington
58 Episcopal Peace Fellowship Palestine Israel Network. - Ithaca, New York
59 Fire Brigades Union, Scotland, UK.
60 Free Palestine Movement. - El Cerrito, California
61 Free Palestine Subcommittee of the National Lawyers Guild (New York, NY)
62 Friends of Deir Ibz'ia. - San Francisco, California
63 Friends of Palestine Wisconsin. - Germantown, Wisconsin
64 Friends of Sabeel-North America. - Chicago, Illinois
65 Friends of Sabeel-North America. - Denver, Colorado
66 Friends of Sabeel-North America. - Portland, Oregon
67 Friends of the Disabled Association, Mechrif, Monte Liban, Lebanon
68 Global Peace and Justice. - New Zealand
69 Hammerhard MediaWorks (Chicago IL)
70 Helena Service for Peace and Justice. - Helena, Montana
71 Hilton Head for Peace (South Carolina)
72 Home for Peace and Justice. - Saginaw, Michigan
73 Human Rights Today. - Washington, D.C.
74 If Americans Knew, Vancouver, Washington
75 In the Name of Humanity. - Rocky Mount, North Carolina
76 Inter-Denominational Advocates for Peace (IDAP). - Ann Arbor, Michigan
77 International Socialist Organization. - Chicago, Illinois
78 International Solidarity Movement - Northern California. - El Cerrito, California
79 International Women's Peace Service. - Deir Istiya, Occupied West Bank
80 Ireland-Palestine Solidarity Campaign. - Ireland
81 Israel/Palestine Task Force California Nevada Conference of the United Methodist Church.- Stockton, California
82 Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions - USA
83 Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions - USA - ( New York)
84 Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions. - Finland
85 Jewish Voice for Peace - Portland
86 Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP)-Westchester, Westchester County, NY
87 Jewish Voice for Peace San Diego Chapter, San Diego, CA
88 Jewish Voice for Peace, Los Angeles, California
89 Jewish Voice for Peace. - Berkeley, California
90 Jewish Voice for Peace. - Boston, Massachusetts.
91 Jewish Voice for Peace. - Sacramento, California.
92 Jewish Voice for Peace-NYC, New York, NY
93 John Jay Students For Justice In Palestine. - New York, New York
94 Justice First Foundation. - West Kingston, Rhode Island
95 Justice for Palestinians. - Houston, Texas
96 Justice for Palestinians. - San Jose, California
97 Kairos USA. - Portland, Oregon
98 Karama, Arab and Islamic world information center, San Diego, CA
99 Keep Hope Alive. - San Francisco, California
100 Kia Ora Gaza. - New Zealand
101 L.A. Jews for Peace. - Los Angeles, California
102 Louisville Committee for Peace in the Middle East. - Louisville, Kentucky
103 Lutherans for Justice in the Holy Land. - Portland, Oregon
104 Madison-Rafah Sister City Project. - Madison, Wisconsin
105 Maine Voices for Palestinian Rights. - Buxton, Maine
106 Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns. - Washington, D.C.
107 Medical Aid for Palestine, Montreal, Canada
108 Meta Peace Team. - Lansing, Michigan
109 Methodist Federation for Social Action. - Washington, D.C.
110 Middle East Children's Alliance. - Berkeley, California
111 Middle East Crisis Committee. - West Haven, Connecticut
112 Middle East Crisis Response. - Woodstock, New York
113 Middle East Peace Now. - Bloomington, Minnesota
114 Middle East Policy Advisory Committee. - Oakland, California
115 Middle East Research and Information Project. - Washington, D.C.
116 Middle East Study Group. - Martinez, California
117 Mid-East Just Peace. - Michigan
118 Minnesota Break the Bonds Campaign. - St. Paul, Minnesota
119 Minnesota Coalition for Palestinian Rights. - Minneapolis, Minnesota
120 Minnesota Peace Project. - Minneapolis, Minnesota
121 MRIHR. - Watertown, Maine
122 NCBDS North Carolina Boycott Divestment Sanctions. - Durham, North Carolina
123 New York University Students for Justice in Palestine
124 NH Veterans for Peace. - Auburn, New Hampshire
125 Nicaragua Center for Community Action, Berkeley, CA, USA
126 NorCal Friends of Sabeel. - Berkeley, California
127 North Coast Coalition for Palestine. - Santa Rosa, California
128 North Shore Coalition for Peace and Justice - Ipswich, MA
129 Northeastern University Students for Justice in Palestine. - Boston, Massachusetts
130 Northfielders for Justice in Palestine/Israel, Northfield, Minnesota, USA
131 Northwest BDS Coalition, Washington State USA
132 NYACT | New Yorkers Against the Cornell-Technion Partnership (New York, NY)
133 Occupied Palestine and Syrian Golan Heights Advocacy Initiative - Beit Sahour, Palestine
134 Open Shuhuda Street. - South Africa
135 Palestine Israel Action Group. - Ann Arbor, Michigan
136 Palestine Solidarity Committee - Harvard College (Cambridge, MA)
137 Palestine Solidarity Committee - Seattle. - Seattle, Washington
138 Palestinian Christian Alliance for Peace, Vienna, Virginia, USA
139 Palestinians for Peace & Democracy. - Houston, Texas
140 Park Slope Food Coop Members for BDS, Brookline, NY
141 Partners for Peace, Hartland, MI
142 PAUSE / Palestine Action Unionsquare East (New York, New York)
143 Pax Christi Maine. - Maine
144 Pax Christi. - South Portland
145 Peace Action. - Silver Spring, Maryland
146 Peace Committee of West Hills Friends Church. - Portland, Oregon
147 Peace Tax Foundation. - Washington, D.C.
148 PEACEWORKERS, San Francisco, CA USA
149 People for Justice in Palestine - Iowa City, IA
150 People for Peace. - Canada
151 People of Faith. - West Hartford, Connecticut
152 Peregrine Forum of Wisconsin. - Madison, Wisconsin
153 Philly BDS. - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
154 Portlanders Opposed to the Occupation of Palestine
155 Portsmouth/S Downs Palestine Solidarity Campaign (Portsmouth, UK)
156 Presbyterian Peace Fellowship. - Stony Point, New York
157 Rachel Corrie Foundation for Peace and Justice. - Olympia, Washington
158 Racine Coalition for Peace and Justice. - Racine, Wisconsin
159 ranumpowerplay.com
160 Rebuilding Alliance. - San Mateo, California
161 Red Wing Veterans for Peace. - Red Wing, Minnesota
162 Refugee Advocacy Group (Melbourne, VIC, Australia)
163 Sacramento BDS, Sacramento, CA
164 Sacramento Regional Coalition for Palestinian Rights. - Sacramento, California
165 Salaam Shalom. - Chapel Hill, North Carolina
166 Salem Peace Committee - Salem, MA, USA
167 San Jose Peace and Justice Center. - San Jose, California
168 Seattle Mideast Awareness Campaign. - Seattle, Washington
169 Socialist Workers of Anchorage, Alaska (Anchorage, AK., United States)
170 South Somerset Palestine Israel Peace Group, UK
171 Southampton Palestine Solidarity Campaign (Southampton, UK)
172 Sporty K9, Ltd, Delray Beach, FL USA
173 St Johns Presbyterian Church. - San Francisco, California
174 St. Louis Jewish Voice for Peace. - St. Louis, Missouri
175 St. Louis Palestine Solidarity Committee. - St. Louis, Missouri
176 St. Louis Women in Black (St. Louis, MO)
177 Strength Through Peace. - Fort Collins, Colorado
178 Students for a Free Palestine. - Oberlin, Ohio
179 Students for Justice in Palestine - Suffolk University, Boston, MA
180 Students for Justice in Palestine at College of Staten Island. - Staten Island, New York
181 Students for Justice in Palestine at Hunter College. - New York, New York
182 Students for Justice in Palestine- UC San Diego. - San Diego, California
183 Students for Justice in Palestine, Rutgers University. - New Brunswick, New Jersey
184 Students for Justice in Palestine. - Staten Island, New York
185 Students for Justice in Palestine--University of Houston. - Houston, Texas
186 Students for Justice in Palestine--University of New Mexico. - Albuquerque, New Mexico
187 Students for Palestine (Southampton, UK)
188 Sussex Friends of Palestine (Brighton, UK)
189 The Alternative Information Center (Jerusalem/Beit Sahour Palestine/Israel)
190 The Canadian Palestinian Foundation of Quebec
191 The Palestine Human Rights Campaign. - New Zealand
192 The Palestine Solidarity Association of Sweden (PGS)
193 Theater of the Oppressed Laboratory (TOPLAB) (New York City, NY)
194 Tiffin Area Pax Christi. - Tiffin, Ohio
195 Tree of Life Educational Fund. - Lyme, Connecticut
196 Tucson Women in Black. - Tucson, Arizona
197 UJP Palestine Task Force. - Massachusetts
198 Une Autre Voix Juive [A Different Jewish Voice](France http://uavj.free.fr)
199 Union Juive Française Pour la Paix [Jewish-French United for Peace](France)
200 Unitarian Universalists for Justice in the Middle East. - Plymouth, Michigan
201 United Church of Christ Palestine Israel Network. - Cleveland, Ohio
202 United Methodist Church. - Buffalo, New York
203 United Methodist Kairos Response. - Middletown, Ohio
204 United Methodist Task Force on Peace with Justice in Palestine/Israel of UNY Conference.- Horseheads, New York
205 United Methodists' Holy Land Task Force. - Culver City, California
206 University of Denver Students for Justice in Palestine. - Denver, Colorado
207 Upper Hudson Peace Action. - Albany, New York
208 US Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel. - California
209 US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation. - Washington, D.C.
210 US Citizens Against War. - Florence, Italy
211 US Peace Council. - New Haven, Connecticut
212 Vancouver for Peace. - Vancouver, Washington
213 Veterans For Peace (San Francisco California, U.S.A.)
214 Washington Interfaith Alliance for Middle East Peace. - Washington, D.C.
215 Watertown Citizens for Peace, Justice and the Environment. - Watertown, Massachusetts
216 Watford Friends of Salfeet - Palestine, Watford, UK
217 WeAreWideAwake.org. - Clermont, Florida
218 Wellstone Democratic Renewal Club. - Berkeley, California
219 WESPAC Foundation (Westchester, NY)
220 Western Carolinians for Peace and Justice in the Middle East. - Black Mountain, North Carolina
221 Wisconsin Middle East Lobby Group. - Wisconsin
222 Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, U.S. Section - Boston, MA
223 Women's International League for Peace and Freedom. - Boulder, Colorado
224 Women's International League for Peace and Freedom. - Santa Cruz, California
225 Yallah English (Dallas, Texas)
226 Yeshurin - Judaism Against Zionism (Antwerp - Belgium)

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Vermonters for a Just Peace in Palestine/Israel                     vtjp@vtjp.org