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To: President Donald Trump, The United States House of Representatives, and The United States Senate

Thanks, Obama! Backing EU labels, US affirms "settlements not part of Israel"

We thank President Obama for defending the EU’s labeling of products from Israeli settlements in the West Bank, and for re-affirming that Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank are not part of Israel.

Why is this important?

Defying the protests of Benjamin Netanyahu, the Obama Administration has affirmed that the European Union is within its rights to clearly label goods from Israeli settlements in the West Bank so that European consumers who choose not to purchase such goods have the information they need to exercise their rights. In so doing, the Administration re-affirmed that in the U.S. view, “we do not consider settlements to be part of Israel.” [1]

Thirty-six Senators led by Tea Party Republican Ted Cruz had falsely claimed in a letter to the EU that the labeling measure amounted to “a de-facto boycott of Israel.” J Street and Americans for Peace Now opposed the Cruz letter, noting that the Cruz letter failed to distinguish between Israel and Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank. [2]

As former US special envoy Martin Indyk recently affirmed from his personal experience trying to facilitate Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, settlements “are the problem” standing in the way of a peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians. [3] Show the Administration and Congress that you support President Obama’s clear and principled stand by signing our petition.