Jordan unions to create database monitoring Israeli products sold in Arab world

Unions and civil society groups opposed to normalising relations with Israel called on Wednesday for the establishment of a database to monitor ‘Israeli activity in the Arab region’.

The call came during a seminar aimed at unifying Arab efforts to stop relations with Israel, according to officials from the Jordanian union movement’s national anti-normalisation committee.

Activists also agreed to hold an additional conference encompassing all civil society groups from around the Middle East and North Africa to warn against the risks of ‘dealing with the Zionist entity’, according to Badi Rafayah, president of the trade unions Anti-Normalisation Committee.

Jordan union leader controversially tied to Iranian ambassador

The Jordan Times reported that the conference of activists from across the Middle East and North Africa was held on Wednesday ( December 15,2010) at the head office of the Jordanian engineers’ union in Amman.

The president of the Jordan engineers union created some controversy among union members earlier this year when he hosted the Ambassador of Iran at the head office of the union in Amman.

Unions’ pro-active work to promote anti-Israel campaign

“Following the success of a seminar by the engineers association, it has been decided to follow up on important recommendations to enhance the efforts of activists from around the region,” Rafayah said following a meeting with officials of the Anti-Normalisation Committee at the Arab Engineers Association held at the Jordan Engineers Association headquarters.

Seminar recommendations included holding a wider conference in Tunisia next year to evaluate activists’ achievements and future challenges.

Rafayah said the pan-Arab anti-normalisation committee decided to be more proactive rather than ‘reactive’ to situations in order to create further visibility for the cause.

Raise awareness of products to boycott

“We will hold several anti-normalisation activities in Arab countries to raise awareness over the impact of normalisation as well as products that need to be boycotted,” he said.

He added that activists will also share information on the types of products originating from Israel and publish the names of companies that have Israeli business ties.

Jordan unions have lead anti-Israel campaign since 1994 peace treaty signed

The unions – mainly representing professional and white collar workers –  have been leading an anti-normalisation campaign since the signing of the 1994 Wadi Araba Peace Treaty between Jordan and Israel.

Union members are reprimanded for making contact with Israelis and face losing membership in their associations if they are found to have any ties with Israel.

Under the law, association membership is mandatory for practising doctors, engineers, lawyers, nurses and pharmacists, among other professions.

Read some  earlier reports on the TULIP website about Jordanian unions and Israel