Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu greets pupils on September 1, the first day of school, in the West Bank settlement of Elkana. (Amir Cohen – pool/AFP/Getty Images)

UN Panel’s Database Angers Israelis, Satisfies Palestinians

The United Nations’ Human Rights Council has announced the compilation of a database of companies that do business with settlements in the West Bank. The database – being called a “blacklist” in Israel – includes 112 companies, at least for now. Most are Israeli, although it also features firms as diverse as Motorola and Airbnb. Israeli officials have blasted the move. Foreign Minister Israel Katz called the database a “a shameful surrender to the pressures of countries and organizations.” Settler leaders, in fact, say the activities of these businesses also benefit Palestinians, and dismiss the database by saying it has “clear anti-Semitic features.” The Human Rights Council says these activities raise “human rights concerns.” The Palestinian Authority agrees, and is lauding it as “a victory for international law.”

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