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String of Defeats for the BDS Movement in Spain

ACOM, an Israel lobby group working to combat BDS in Spain, won a legal victory after a court ruling suspended the effects of a local boycott against Israel in the Olesa Municipality on the outskirts of Barcelona.

The group’s anti-BDS activity is a response to the Solidarity Network Against the Occupation of Palestine, an umbrella group of pro-BDS supporters who has been pushing boycott agreements against Israel among city halls, supported by the Communist, BNG, and the extreme left-wing Podemos parties. 

A growing number of cities across Spain have passed declarations in favor of BDS over the past year, as Podemos has gained access to public institutions and local government. Police have revealed that due to financing by the Venezuelan and the Iranian regimes, Podemos has gained control over some 40 localities, including Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia, Spain’s three largest cities.

When a number of city halls passed boycott resolutions against Israel, ACOM appealed to the courts claiming that the resolutions violate the law, and their appeal was accepted.

In the Olesa appeal, the judge suspended the BDS agreement, explaining, “A local agreement of this nature implies the possibility of denying participation to any entity or person of Israeli nationality or origin in any contract or activity sponsored by the city council.”

A Madrid Court also ruled to suspend BDS agreements. The ripples of these legal defeats was felt when a boycott motion against Israel was defeated in a plenary session in La Guardia, a town of 11,000 inhabitants in northern Spain this past week.

ACOM chairman Angel Mas said that ACOM will continue to respond aggressively by presenting lawsuits against every single city council or public institution that has declared a boycott against Israel.

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