The Palestinian BDS National Committee called for a boycott of the Jerusalem Spring Festival for shopping organised by the Israeli authorities, after occupation forces prevented Palestinians from holding occasional activities and events in the city. A BDS-led campaign spread across social media calling for the boycott of the festival which was held yesterday in the occupied East Jerusalem neighbourhood of Beit Hanina.
Activists allege that the event aims to replace the city’s heritage with Jewish symbols. In an interview with Quds Press, the General Coordinator of the BDS movement, Mahmoud Nawajaa, said that the festival fell within the framework of “normalisation” with the occupation authorities.The event’s main sponsor, he added, is an Israeli bank that has previously frozen the assets of several Palestinian institutions and is currently supporting various settlement activities in the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem.
Festival organisers had claimed that the event was intended to support Jerusalem’s economy. This was criticised by Palestinian activists in occupied Jerusalem, who pointed out that the Old City’s economic development should not be achieved at the expense of “embedding a Jewish identity” as part of the wider Judaisation project of the Israel government.