June 01, 2011 : British universities complicit in Israeli apartheid, militarism and occupation

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Corporate Watch has carried out research into several universities' investments, procurement of service providers and joint projects. The aim was to examine whether the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions movement should target British universities' links with Israeli universities and with companies complicit in Israeli apartheid, militarism and occupation.

Part one: Sussex University and SOAS

The following is a list of:

* each university's collaborations with Israeli companies and universities;

* investment in or procurement from Israeli settler companies, Israeli companies, companies selling arms to Israel, companies selling Israeli goods, companies with assets or investments in Israel, companies with significant investments in any of the above.

This is not a 'boycott list'; it is simply a guide for campaigners considering launching divestment campaigns against these universities. Campaigners may wish to cherry-pick companies for divestment which, for example, are directly involved in Israeli settlements or aiding Israeli militarism.

The list has been compiled with the boycott call from the Palestinian Academic Boycott Initiative (PACBI) in mind. Here is an excerpt from the call:

"We, Palestinian academics and intellectuals, call upon our colleagues in the international community to comprehensively and consistently boycott all Israeli academic and cultural institutions as a contribution to the struggle to end Israel's occupation, colonization and system of apartheid, by applying the following:

1. Refrain from participation in any form of academic and cultural cooperation, collaboration or joint projects with Israeli institutions;

2. Advocate a comprehensive boycott of Israeli institutions at the national and international levels, including suspension of all forms of funding and subsidies to these institutions;

3. Promote divestment and disinvestment from Israel by international academic institutions..."

The School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS)

Joint Projects: SOAS Faculty of Arts and Humanities is funding several academics who are participating in a joint programme with the Hebrew University (Israel) and Al Quds University (Palestine) called 'Sensory City'. The project explores how “sensory landscapes, performed behaviours and the built environment shape narratives of place, space and community in the Old City of Jerusalem."

Academics in the Department of the Study of Religions are currently preparing a conference on "Jewish Art in its Roman-Byzantine Context" in conjunction with the Hebrew University Jerusalem. This conference is scheduled to take place in Jerusalem in May 2012.

Both projects break the boycott of Israeli academic institutions called for by the Palestinian Boycott National Committee (BNC) and the Palestine Academic Boycott Initiative (PACBI).


BT: Part of a partnership with Israeli telecommunications firm Bezeq.

HSBC: Investor in BAE Systems, supplier of arms to Israel.

John Lewis: Waitrose, a part of John Lewis, sells goods from Israel and Israeli settlements.

Mistsubishi: The company's products are distributed in Israel by the Israeli company, Mayer Cars and Trucks. Mitsubishi generators are distributed by Orcal Industries and Mechanisation, whose generators are used in Atarot military checkpoint in the West Bank.

Unilever: Unilever fully owns Beigel and Beigel, a baked goods' factory in the industrial zone of Barkan, which is a settlement in the occupied West Bank. In 2010, Unilever has announced it will move the factory of Beigel and Beigel from the settlement, however this has not happened yet.

L'Oreal: Operates in Israel. Its Israeli subsidiary's HQ is in Migdal Haemek, on land expropriated from the Palestinian community of Mujaydil. L'Oreal own Vichy, whose products are sold/promotedid3 in several pharmacies in settlements in the West Bank.

Nestle: The company owns 50.1% of the Israeli Osem corporation. Osem plans to build a factory for Nestle in Israel. Osem is a customer of two companies based in the settlements.

Thermo Fischer: a partner of ICx Technologies, supplier of security systems for the settlements, apartheid wall and checkpoints.

Tesco: Sells Israeli and Israeli settlement produce. Tesco sources plastic bags from Adir, a company based in Mishor Adumim.

Prudential: Investor in several companies who supply arms to Israel including Lockheed Martin, Boeing and Raytheon.

Cisco: Has R&D investments in Israel. The company is a customer of Marvell Systems Solutions Israel.

Johnson and Johnson: Opened office in Israel near Shfayim. Took-over Biosense, a Haifa-based producer of medical equipment

Service Providers:

3m: A customer of Ofertex. Ofertex is an Israeli company based in Barkan Industrial Zone in the occupied West Bank.

Barclays: Hold shares in Raytheon, and provide market maker services to ITT, suppliers of arms to Israel. Barclays are also a major shareholder in Chevrolet and Rapiscan who supply baggage scanners for use at Israeli checkpoints.

BNP Paribas: Operates branches in Israel.

BT: Part of a partnership with Israeli telecommunications firm Bezeq.

Dell: A customer of Marvell Systems Solutions Israel.

Hewlett Packard: Operates in Ra'aana High tech park and has a laboratory in Haifa's Technion.

Honeywell: Partner of ICx Technologies, supplier of security systems for the settlements, apartheid wall and checkpoints.

ISS: Provides 'manpower' services in Israeli settlements.

Lloyds: Principal banker for BAE, supplier of arms to Israel.

Parsons Brinckerhoff: Provided planning services for the A1 train line through the West Bank (purchased by Balfour Beatty in 2009).

Hebrew University: Israeli university.

University of Sussex

Joint Projects:

Sussex University, according to the information they disclosed via FOI, has no collaborations with Israeli Universities.

Service Providers:

BT: See above.

Coca Cola: The company's Israeli franchise owns Tara whose subsidiary has a dairy farm in the occupied Jordan Valley. Coca Cola Israel is supplied by Adir Plastic Packaging, a company based in the settlement industrial zone of Mishor Adumim.

Barclays: See above.

Dell: See above.

Fisher Scientific UK Ltd: Thermo Fisher is a partner of ICx Technologies, supplier of security systems for the settlements, apartheid wall and checkpoints.

Lloyds: See above.

Siemens: Traffic control systems of the company are installed by its Israeli representative, Orad Group, on apartheid roads (roads on which only Israelis are allowed to travel).

Veolia: Veolia are part of the Citypass consortium, building a tramway through occupied East Jerusalem. The company also operate buses between Israel's West Bank settlements and maintain a waste dump and settler waste collection services in the occupied Jordan Valley. The university has a contract with Veolia which began in 2009 and ends in 2015.

Prudential: See above.


General Electric: GE are a partner of ICx (see above).

G4S: Delivers services to Israeli prisons and illegal settlements.

Prudential: See above.

Aviva: Investor in several companies selling arms to Israel including Northrop Grumann.

Barclays: See above.

HSBC: See above.

Tesco: Sells Israeli and Israeli settlement products.

Sainsbury: Sells Israeli and Israeli settlement produce.

Unilever: See above.

Lloyds: See above.