Veolia, a large French multinational, is helping to build and operate a tramway linking illegal settlements in East Jerusalem with Israel. Not only do the settlements contravene article 49 of the 4th Geneva Convention forbidding an occupier transferring its own civilians into the territory it occupies, but in most cases the establishment of the Israeli settlements involved war crimes too. The tramway tightens Israel’s hold on occupied East Jerusalem, ties the settlements more firmly into Israel and undermines chances of a just peace for the Palestinian people.
Veolia also operates bus services for Israeli settlers, running them between the illegal settlements and Israel. The buses travel on settler roads, which have decimated Palestinian towns and villages by stealing their land for construction, and cut them off from each other. Palestinians were, until recently, forbidden from using these settler-only apartheid roads.
Through its subsidiary, TMM, Veolia also collects refuse from illegal settlements at the Tovlan landfill site in the occupied Jordan Valley.
Veolia must be made to halt these activities which enable Israel to maintain and tighten its grip on the occupation. Until then, we encourage a boycott of Veolia a firm complicit in the ongoing occupation and dispossession of the Palestinian people.
For more information on Veolia see the Dump Veolia .
Veolia in the North West
Veolia currently has contracts with several councils in the North West including Blackpool (£387,620 per month), Burnley (£336,874 per month) Trafford (£233,667 per month) , Cheshire & Chester (£2,170 per month),Â and Bolton(£625 per month) .
If you live in any of these Boroughs, write to you Councillor or Council Leader. An example letter is given below
Example Letter regarding Veolia Local Authority Contract
Dear Councillor ,
I am writing to you with regard to the contract Trafford Council currently holds with Veolia Environmental Services for the provision of waste, rubbish and recycling services to the value of £233,667 per month. I ask that you cancel this contract at the earliest opportunity and that you exclude Veolia Environmental Services from consideration as a bidder for future contracts with the Council.
I make these requests due to Veolia being a leading partner in a project specifically condemned by the UN Human Rights Council as being in clear violation of international law and relevant United Nations resolutions and which is part of a process our own government has described as illegal.
As a leading partner in the City Pass consortium, Veolia has been building a light rail tramway system linking West Jerusalem to illegal settlements in occupied East Jerusalem. The system is soon to open, with Veolia responsible for its operation. The rail system will cement Israel’s hold on occupied East Jerusalem and tie the settlements even more firmly into the State of Israel.
It is the long-held position of successive British governments that Israeli settlement activity is illegal. As the Foreign Office website notes attempts by Israel to alter the character or demography of East Jerusalem are unacceptable and extremely provocative. Settlements, as well as the evictions and demolitions of Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem are illegal.
It is not only the generality of the settlements and the infrastructure built to support them that have been declared illegal. The tramway project itself has been explicitly condemned by the United Nations Human Rights Council. On 14th April 2010 it expressed its grave concern at â€œThe Israeli decision to establish and operate a tramway between West Jerusalem and the Israeli settlement of Pisgat Zeev, which is in clear violation of international law and relevant United Nations resolutions.
Veolia, through its subsidiary TMM, also helps sustain illegal settlements through the operation of the Tovlan landfill site in occupied Jordan Valley, which taking refuse from settlements depositing it on stolen Palestinian land. Via its ownership of Connex it runs bus services linking illegal settlements to Israel.
Through its involvement in these activities, Veolia is facilitating Israel’s grave breaches of the Fourth Geneva Convention, and is complicit in its perpetuation of those breaches.
I therefore urge you to cancel this contract at the earliest opportunity and exclude Veolia from tendering for future work on grounds of their highly unethical and illegal behaviour.
I look forward to hearing from you on this important matter.