The French leader condemned boycotts on Israel, saying there was “no sense in these campaigns.”
French Prime Minister Manuel Valls told the National Assembly that he and his government were opposed to any form of boycotts targeting Israel.
“I tell you here clearly: we condemn all campaigns of boycott against Israeli products,” he told the French parliament in response to a question from Jewish lawmaker Meir Habib on the anti-Israel BDS (Boycott, Sanctions, Divest) movement.
“The boycott creates a climate of hatred in France. Have we forgotten that in January it was a kosher supermarket that was targeted. It stigmatizes before killing,” said Habib, who represents French citizens living abroad, including those in Israel. He was relating to an Islamic terror attack on the Hyper Cacher supermarket in Paris that left for Jews dead.
The French Supreme Court upheld a judgment in October condemning BDS activists who had called for a boycott of Israeli products, labeling its activities as hate crimes.
Habib lamented in his question persisting calls in France to boycott the Jewish State.
“There is no sense in these campaigns and therefore the French government from this point of view is very clear,” Valls said in response, assuring that his government would take “all necessary measures to condemn these campaigns.”
“Too often, anti-Zionism hides behind legitimate criticism of the policy of the State of Israel and turns into anti-Semitism,” the PM said.
“Israel is a democracy and fights against terrorism,’’ he added.
He did not comment further on a question from Habib regarding the recent decision by the European Union (EU) to require all Israeli products from Judea and Samaria to be specially labeled, thus singling them out for boycotts.