Two Israeli Arab businessmen who were planning to open a Fox clothing store in
Ramallah have backtracked following a wave of protests by “anti-normalization”
activists and journalists, The Jerusalem Post has learned.
Fox is an
Israel-based clothing store that has many stores around the country, including
in the Arab sector.
One of the businessmen is from east Jerusalem, while
the second is from the North.
The two won the franchise to open a Fox
store in Ramallah, the first of its kind in the Palestinian
The new project was supposed to provide jobs for nearly 150
Palestinians, some of whom had already received training to start working in the
Although the owners had obtained permission from the PA
Ministry of Economy to open the clothing store, Palestinian activists and
journalists launched a campaign against the opening of the store in
The activists and journalists said that the opening of an
Israeli clothing store in a Palestinian city was a form of “normalization” with
One of the leaders of the campaign, Fadi Arouri, a
photojournalist with China’s Xinhua News Agency, told Wattan TV that the opening
of a Fox store in Ramallah was a “stain of disgrace.”
Arouri has also led
campaigns aimed at preventing Israeli journalists from working in PA-controlled
Earlier this week, a group of Palestinian activists
demonstrated in the center of Ramallah in protest against the intention to open
a Fox store in the city.
The activists called on the Palestinian
Authority to ban Israeli firms from opening businesses in Palestinian
Following the protests, the two businessmen decided this week to
cancel the project, although renovation work at the new clothing store had
reached an advanced stage.
A Palestinian businessman in Ramallah
expressed sorrow over the decision not to open the Fox store, saying this was a
blow to the Palestinian economy.
“Many people could have profited from
this project,” the businessman told the Post. “It’s sad when thugs and
extortionists succeed in preventing any economic project.”