Ben & Jerry’s is Profiting from Israel’s Illegal Settlements and Occupation of 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.


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

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Vermonters for a Just Peace in Palestine/Israel