Church of Sweden backs Israel boycott campaign

 

Church of Sweden backs Israel boycott campaign

Author: 

George Conger

The Kyrkomötet  –  the Church Assembly of the Church of Sweden -- has asked its government to support the Palestinian Authority’s bid for membership at the United Nations and called for a boycott of Israeli products manufactured in Judea and Samaria.
On 21 Nov 2012 the annual synod of Sweden’s state Lutheran church adopted a series of pro-Palestinian and anti-Israel resolutions during its annual meeting in Uppsala.  A longtime critic of Israeli policies, the Kyrkomötettoday also gave its backing the Kairos Palestine Document and called for Israel’s withdrawal from East Jerusalem and the “occupied” territories.
In a spirited debate that broke along party lines – members of the Kyrkomötet are affiated with Sweden’s political parties -- the Church Assembly voted 148 in favor, 60 opposed with 29 abstentions to adopt the Kairos Document.  Critics of the document said it was inappropriate for the church to take sides in a political dispute, however the calls to punish Israel for its actions against the Palestinians won the day and the Kairos Palestine Document was endorsed.
According to the Jerusalem’s NGO Monitor, the Kairos Palestine Document calls for “BDS [boycotts, divestment and sanctions] against Israel, advances the Christian theological doctrine of supercessionism and denies the Jewish historical connection to Israel. The document also ignores the extreme harassment and violence committed against Palestinian Christians by Palestinian Muslims.”
Other resolutions adopted included a call to “end to the Israeli occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza and to recommend the churches to follow the prompts in the Kairos Palestine document to cancel investments, impose sanctions and boycott companies and products from the Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian areas, the West Bank and East Jerusalem as well as in supporting the forces in Gaza working for democracy and human rights and to demand that the ongoing Israeli blockade of Gaza is lifted.”
The Swedish Church stated it “fully supports Israel as a sovereign state within the internationally recognized borders and we fully support a sovereign Palestinian state in Gaza, the West Bank, including East Jerusalem. That means a two-state solution based on 1967 borders.”