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Scarlett Johansson resigns from Oxfam over contract with a settlement-based Israeli firm

US actress Scarlett Johansson announced that she has quit her role as an ambassador for Oxfam, an international organisation that fights against poverty, after insisting on promoting an Israeli company that operates in the West Bank settlement of Ma'ale Adumim.

Oxfam said in a statement that it has accepted Johansson's resignation, adding that "while Oxfam respects the independence of our ambassadors, Ms Johansson's role promoting the company SodaStream is incompatible with her role as an Oxfam Global Ambassador," according to the United Press International news agency.

Oxfam argues that businesses, such as SodaStream, that operate in Israeli settlements further the ongoing poverty and denial of rights of the Palestinian communities.

The organisation noted that it opposes all forms of trade with the Israeli settlements, which are considered illegal under international law.

Johansson cited a fundamental difference of opinion with Oxfam as a reason for her resignation.

Her television advert for SodaStream International will premiere on 2 February during the Super Bowl, the final match of the American Football season.

Last week, Johansson justified working with the Israeli company by saying that she is not the face of any Israeli social or political movement nor a supporter of discrimination, but instead a strong proponent of economic co-operation and social interaction between the Israelis and Palestinians.

The actress had been active with Oxfam since 2005 and became its global ambassador in 2007.

Asia & AmericasIsraelMiddle EastNewsPalestineUS
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