The anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement works against peace and does not deserve to be nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, Likud MK Sharren Haskel wrote to Norwegian Ambassador to Israel Jon Hanssen- Bauer and several Norwegian lawmakers.
Haskel’s letter on Tuesday came several days after the leader of the far-left, opposition Red Party in the Norwegian parliament, Bjornar Moxnes, nominated the BDS movement for a Nobel Peace Prize.
The Likud MK said she is “dismayed” by the nomination.
“BDS is not a peace-seeking movement. On the contrary, it is an antisemitic movement that seeks to demonize the State of Israel, undermining the peace process,” she wrote.
Haskel added: “There is nothing peaceful about delegitimizing a country’s academic and cultural institutions that are critical to creating an environment conducive for peace.”
“It is clear that the BDS movement’s ultimate goal is to destroy the State of Israel,” Haskel said. “Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East, yearning for peace with its neighbors and affording its citizens equal rights, irrespective of their color or creed.”
Any parliamentarian or cabinet minister of any country, university professor or Nobel Peace Prize laureate, among others, may nominate a person or group for the prize.
Moxnes was quoted by the Inter Press Service news agency on Friday as saying that “awarding a Nobel Peace Prize to the BDS movement would be a powerful sign demonstrating that the international community is committed to supporting a just peace in the Middle East and using peaceful means to end military rule and broader violations of international law.”
Hanssen-Bauer said the Norwegian government opposes boycotts of Israel and does not support the BDS Movement.
“The Norwegian Government works to increase the cooperation between our two countries,” he stated.
The ambassador also pointed out that “the Norwegian Nobel Committee is an independent body and is responsible for selecting the Nobel Peace Prize Laureates. Thousands of persons world-wide have the right to nominate candidates, and hundreds of candidates are nominated each year. The Norwegian Government is not implied in the process.”Many pro-Israel activists took to social media to express their disdain about the nomination.
“The BDS movement is an anti-peace movement, they made this very clear over and over again,” Israeli activist Hen Mazzig told The Jerusalem Post on Tuesday. “They are ‘anti-normalization’ of the relationship between Jews and Arabs and actively pushing Palestinians and Israelis to fight each other.”
On Monday, Mazzig debated Rebecca Vilkomerson, the executive director of far-left organization Jewish Voice for Peace, on i24 News.
Jewish Voice for Peace is among 20 organizations on a blacklist Israel is compiling as part of its ban on BDS activists’ entry to Israel.
The US-organization tweeted that the nomination was “wonderful news.”
Vilkomerson told i24 News that it was important to support the BDS movement because “it is a nonviolent that’s called for by Palestinians to end the occupation and for the full rights of Palestinian people so given that we certainly don’t want violence, and I think we all agree on that, a non-violent alternative is something we should all be supporting.”