City of Edinburgh rejects boycott call

Pro-Palestinian group alleged that the Mei Eden bottled water company "pillages" Syrian resources.

banias spring 224 88 (photo credit: Courtesy)
banias spring 224 88
(photo credit: Courtesy)
The Edinburgh City Council has rejected a recent call to boycott the Israeli bottled water company Mei Eden (Eden Springs), the Stop the Boycott advocacy group announced Friday. The call to boycott Mei Eden came last month from the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign, which alleged that the water company was "pillaging" natural resources rightfully belonging to Syria. According to a report in the Edinburgh Evening News published at the end of November, Mei Eden's UK branch provides water coolers for many public schools and offices throughout Edinburgh. The paper said Mei Eden's contract with the city is worth £117,000 ($352,000). SPSC Chairman Mick Napier was quoted by the Evening News as saying he was "outraged" that municipal money was going to "reward" Mei Eden. "This company pillages the water of an occupied territory," he declared. On Holocaust Memorial Day this year, the SPSC staged the play Perdition, which claims that the Zionist movement had collaborated with the Nazis on the Final Solution. Stop the Boycott said in a statement that prior to the council's decision to reject the SPSC call to boycott Mei Eden, MSP Tom McCabe had sent city officials a letter in which he pointed out that earlier this year, a similar call to boycott Israel had been initiated in the Scottish parliament but rejected by its Petitions Committee. McCabe's letter said that the committee had found the boycott call to be based on "flawed and inaccurate assertions." Stop the Boycott co-chairman Jeremy Newmark welcomed the Edinburgh city council's decision to continue working with the Israeli supplier, calling its decision "sensible and prudent." The SPSC's attempt to target the city's business dealings with an Israeli firm, he said, had been "rightly recognized as part of a wider campaign to vilify anything remotely linked to Israel."