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Livni meets with British ambassador over U.K. boycotts

By Barak Ravid, Haaretz, May 29, 2007
Source: Livni meets with British ambassador over U.K. boycotts

Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni met with British Ambassador to Israel Tom Philips yesterday over reports of a planned United Kingdom boycott of Israeli labor unions.

Britain has become a major battlefield in Israel's fight for its existence as a Jewish state in recent years. The number of British organizations calling for a boycott of Israel, their public campaigns and their constant comparisons between Israel and the apartheid regime of South Africa have made the battle for British public opinion particularly significant.

Tomorrow, representatives of the British University and College Union (UCU) are scheduled to meet in Bournemouth. The agenda includes a proposal to boycott Israeli academic institutions.

In her meeting with Philips, Livni expressed dissatisfaction over the proposed boycotts, noting that they stand in complete contradiction to the positive relationship between Israel and the UK.

Philips replied that his government is opposed to the boycotts and repeated the British position that boycotts and sanctions are not helpful in resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Philips also informed Livni of activities by the British Council and other British cultural institutions that are aimed at improving ties between academic institutions.

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