Protesters call for boycott of Israel [file].
(photo credit: REUTERS)
In a massive blow to the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, a Spanish High Court of the Asturias region, upheld a decision last week, declaring a Langreo City Council agreement to boycott Israel illegal.
This marks the first time that a High Court in Spain has issued a judgment relating to BDS, thanks to the legal actions brought forth by ACOM, a pro-Israel lobby group working to combat BDS in Spain.
ACOM’s president Angel Mas recently told The Jerusalem Post that the call for a boycott against Israel is part of a “growing trend in Spain among local municipalities.”
According to Mas, this past year alone saw some 60 municipalities declare a boycott of Israel – some knowingly while others are misled into declaring their cities “Free of Israeli Apartheid” by anti-Israel activists.
With each declaration, ACOM has provided a first line of defense, bringing forth legal action against each and every municipality that has declared a boycott.
“We have to create the opposite deterrence, letting them know that there are consequences for their actions,” Mas said, “Otherwise they [BDS] will win.”
ACOM filed legal action against the Langreo City Council when they initially declared the boycott and the Court Number 4 of Oviedo ruled in its favor, declaring the municipality’s actions against Israel illegal.
The city council in turn appealed to the High Court, which rejected the motion to overturn the original decision.
According to ACOM, the High Court upheld, “that the city council lacks competencies to decree an international boycott and to alter the European Directive and the national law on public procurement.
“In addition the High Court expands on the blatant unconstitutional discrimination and lack of neutrality that such a boycott would represent.”
This ruling provides an historic achievement for the Spanish pro-Israel lobby group, as the High Court effectively legitimized its anti-boycott legal initiatives. According to ACOM, the ruling further expanded a previous constitutional doctrine on the matter that allowed any Jewish individual to sue for defamation against any Jew or Jewish community, and allowing the pro-Israel group to take legal action based on discrimination or slander against Israelis.