EU countries press for labelling of Israeli settlement goods

AP News
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Posted: Apr 16, 2015 12:11 PM

JERUSALEM (AP) — More than a dozen European governments have called for the labelling of goods produced in Israeli settlements in the West Bank.

Diplomats from 16 countries, including some of Israel's closest allies, signed a letter calling on EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini to start the process. Signatories include the U.K., France, the Netherlands, Italy and Spain.

Israel's Haaretz daily published the letter on Thursday. A European diplomat confirmed the authenticity of the letter. He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was discussing internal EU affairs.

Israel captured the West Bank from Jordan in the 1967 war. Palestinians demand the territory as part of their future state. The international community views settlements as illegitimate.

The European Union is Israel's largest trading partner.

This week Israel's Supreme Court rejected a petition by Arab and pro-Palestinian groups to overturn a law prohibiting boycotts against Israel and West Bank settlements.

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Associated Press writer John-Thor Dahlburg in Brussels contributed to this report.