Youth Wing of 2nd Largest German Trade Union Rejects BDS, Anti-Zionist Group
A German youth organization affiliated with the country’s second largest trade union has disavowed the Palestinian-led boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel, as well as an anti-Zionist group that endorses a “one state” solution.
In a Facebook post on Saturday, ver.di Jugend announced that it passed a motion at its annual conference to reject BDS and FOR-Palestine, a group that advocates for a Palestinian-majority state in lieu of Israel and strongly opposes Zionism — the movement that supports the Jewish people’s right to national self-determination.
“ver.di rejects any cooperation with the above-mentioned organizations and their affiliates,” the message read, “and condemns their activities in a political, cultural, economic and scientific context.”
The news was commended on social media by an official with the Israeli labor federation Histadrut, as well as by the Berlin branch of the American Jewish Committee, which called it “a clear repudiation” of BDS.
“We are very pleased with this decision and the political signal,” AJC-Berlin said.
Last year, the youth wing of the German Trade Union Confederation (DGB), an umbrella group for eight trade unions that represent some six million members, reaffirmed a 2017 resolution rejecting BDS and FOR-Palestine.
“The organizations demand a cultural, political, scientific and economic boycott of Israel, question its right to exist, cooperate with antisemitic organizations and tolerate antisemitic actions and positions in their own ranks,” DGB youth officer Josef Holnburger said at the time. “We think that’s dangerous.”
“Unfortunately, a reaffirmation of our position was needed as the BDS movement gained momentum and campaigned for its destructive strategy at international and European level,” Holnburger added.