Trade unions & Palestine

The following motions in solidarity with Palestine were passed by TUC Congress in 2018 and 2019.

1. 2019 TUC Palestine motionPalestine : supporting rights to self-determination

Congress notes:

The US and Israeli administrations are destroying prospects for peace in Palestine – by recognising Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, stopping funding for Palestinian refugees, the continuing siege of Gaza, expanding illegal settlements and plans to annex illegally large areas of the West Bank. Trump’s “deal of the century” is an attempt to destroy core Palestinian rights.

Congress believes:

TUC policy must prioritise Palestinians’ rights to freedom, justice and equality, including by applying these principles based on international law to all UK trade with Israel.
The TUC needs to condemn the ongoing injustices against the Palestinians, denied their right to self-determination since the British Mandate, and during the 1948 Nakba when Palestinians were forcibly displaced from their homes.

Congress resolves to:

  • oppose any proposed solution for Palestinians, including Trump’s ‘deal’, not based on international law and UN resolutions recognising their collective rights to self-determination and to return to their homes
  • support efforts to establish an ethical policy on all UK’s trade with Israel, framed around international law on settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories and stopping any arms trade with Israel used in violation of the human rights of the Palestinians
  • commit to raise the pressure on corporations complicit in arms trading and supporting Israel’s illegal occupation and settlement building, by working with its affiliated unions, with the international trade union movement, and the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, to develop strategies to put pressure on complicit corporations to cease all such activities.

Motion received from: AUE (Artists’ Union England.)

2. 2018 TUC Palestine motion – Cuts to UNWRA and the Nation-State Law 

Congress condemns the Knesset (Israeli Parliament) majority decision on 19 July 2018 to adopt the new “nation-state law”.

Congress shares the opposition expressed by a wide range of Israeli citizens, including Palestinians, to this law which institutionally discriminates against Palestinian citizens of Israel.

The passing of the law has led to demonstrations in Tel Aviv called by groups asserting that “we are all equal citizens – Arabs and Jews, women and men, Mizrahim, Ethiopians, those of us from the former USSR and members of the LGBTQ community”.

Opposition to the law has also been expressed by the distinguished conductor and activist Daniel Barenboim, a group of over 100 writers and artists, members of the Druze community and the Peace Now group.

Congress expresses its solidarity with all those seeking to oppose this law and calls on the General Council to make representations to the UK government and to the Israeli authorities.

Congress also condemns the 24 August 2018 decision by the Trump Administration to cut $300 million from the aid budget to the United Nations Works & Relief Agency (UNWRA) which is responsible for 5.4 million Palestinian refugees. This will result in threats to the education of over 526,000 Palestinian children and the jobs of 22,000 teachers.

Congress further calls on the General Council to make representations to the FCO to significantly increase the British contribution to UNWRA to avoid this humanitarian disaster.

Mover: ASLEF

Seconder: Unite