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Major concerns in Israel over EU boycott

The Israeli banking sector is deeply concerned following an EU consultative committee recommended a boycott of banks involved in settlement policies, local media reported yesterday.

Israeli newspaper Maariv reported an Israel official in the banking sector saying: "There are major concerns in the Israeli banking sector after news that the EU might adopt recommendations to boycott Israeli banks involved in settlement activities and grant housing loans to buy homes in settlements."

The official warned that this would cause a serious problem as all Israeli banks are linked to settlements. "This is not a boycott of certain goods here or there, but a boycott of the entire banking sector which is largely and directly connected to the EU."

According the official, the Israeli authorities have to recognise what an EU boycott means for Israeli banks.

"This means freezing the properties of Israeli banks abroad," the official said. "Any bank that grants housing loans in Jerusalem will be blacklisted."

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