Israel motion 'damaged credibility of NUJ'

The National Union of Journalists has overturned one of its most controversial policies of recent times, a call for a boycott on goods and services from the state of Israel.

The union passed the motion at its 2007 Annual Delegate Meeting – but passed a motion at this year’s event in Belfast last weekend reversing its position ‘on the grounds that it jeopardises the safety and credibility of NUJ members”.

Last year’s motion, which pledged the union’s support to a TUC-organised boycott of Israel – although such a move never happened – caused anger among some journalists.

NUJ general secretary Jeremy Dear told the conference to vote for the motion ‘not because you are pro-Israel of pro-Palestine, but because you believe in the future of this union’and said last year’s motion had ‘unleashed a wave of criticism”.

Several members spoke in favour of the proposed boycott but the motion was passed overwhelmingly.

The motion carried a lengthy amendment added by the union’s national executive council pledging that the union will reaffirm responsibilities to its sister unions in Palestine as well engaging with the National Federation of Israeli Journalists.

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