Global activists will launch on Friday a week of action targeting what they describe as Hewlett-Packard’s “complicity in Israeli occupation”.
According to campaigners, the week of action – which starts on Black Friday, the biggest US shopping day of the year – is expected to be “the largest coordinated series of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) actions focused on a single target to date.”
Around 100 actions are currently planned, spanning six continents, targeting Hewlett-Packard (HP) companies, citing “their role in providing key services and technology infrastructure that enable the Israeli military occupation of Palestinian lands and suppression of Palestinian human rights.”
Activists say this includes “specialised technology made by HP companies that is used to support Israel’s military checkpoints, segregated ID system, illegal settlements, prison system and naval blockade of the Gaza Strip.”
Caroline Hunter, the Polaroid employee who discovered her company’s role in South Africa and helped launch the boycott campaign ending Polaroid’s involvement in the regime in 1977, is a supporter of the HP campaign.
“Just as Polaroid was a key boycott target during the Apartheid era for providing imaging for South Africa’s notorious pass system, people of conscience today should boycott HP companies for providing imaging and technology for Israeli apartheid,” she said.
Anna Baltzer, director of Organising and Advocacy at the US Campaign for Palestinian Rights, commented:
“Veolia, SodaStream, Ahava, and Orange’s decisions to divest on different levels from Israel’s occupation following global Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) campaigns have illustrated that complicity in Israeli oppression of Palestinians is bad for business. Campaigners worldwide are now sending that same message to HP companies.”
According to campaigners, the Presbyterian Church (USA), United Church of Christ, Quaker Friends Fiduciary Corporation, Mennonite Central Committee and Unitarian Universalist Association have already divested from HP companies due to their involvement in the occupation.