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Fayyad: PA will clear West Bank of settlement products

Jan. 5, 2010 7:59 P.M. (Updated: Jan. 7, 2010 9:26 A.M.)
Salfit – Ma'an – Before tossing goods made in Israeli settlements into a fire on Tuesday, Prime Minister Salam Fayyad affirmed the dedication of the Palestinian Authority to ridding local markets of the goods, and ridding the West Bank of the settlements entirely.

The products being tossed were all found in the Salfit municipality, southeast of Nablus. They were found on trucks and in shops in the district, and would have been for sale to Palestinians. Much of the time goods from settlements are discounted or spoiled.

In his speech, Fayyad explained the long-term destruction the settlement project has on Palestine, and the damage to the Palestinian national project of ending the occupation and establishing a Palestinian state. Purchasing settlement goods supports the industries built on confiscated Palestinian land, which Palestinians seek as part of an eventual state.

“This is a collective responsibility, and the Palestinian National Authority will be the first supporter, but we must join all our efforts on official and popular levels to ensure the continuation of this campaign to clean our markets of settlements products,” Fayyad said. He said the first priority would be to strengthen the Palestinian industries so local products could replace those coming from settlements in both Palestinian and international markets.

Along with Palestinian efforts to shut down markets to settlement goods, Fayyad called on the international community to put pressure on Israel to cease its activities in Palestinian areas, particularly the construction of settlements. He praised the position of the United Kingdom, which began labeling settlement products, and parts of South America, which have started a boycott of the goods altogether.

Also at the event were the Minister of the National Economy Hassan Abu Labada, Salfit Governor Munir Al-Abushi, Salfit's mayor, as well as several police and local officials.

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