Lawfare Project’s Counter-BDS Initiative in Spain Yields Two More Wins!

The Lawfare Project (LP) is thrilled to announce two more counter-BDS conquests in Spain, achieved by LP’s Spanish counsel Ignacio-Wenley Palacios Iglesias. We congratulate and thank both Mr. Palacios and our partner organization in this initiative, ACOM (Acción y Comunicación en Oriente Medio).

On Friday, March 17, the Magistrate of the Court nº 5 of Barcelona ruled illegal the boycott decision of the City Council of Barberà del Vallès, a city of 32,550 inhabitants in the metropolitan area of Barcelona. This judgment is particularly significant because the Magistrate is the most senior judge in Barcelona. Consequently, her position will carry great weight for the next set of court actions against boycotts in the region.

This follows another victory earlier this month, when the City Council of Gijón revoked its boycott targeting companies chartered in or that trade with Israel, which was passed in January 2016. The boycott formally declared the city a “Free Space of Israel Apartheid,” and provided for the introduction of bylaws that committed the Council to refrain from entering into any agreements or contracts with public bodies, companies, or organizations that might participate in, collaborate with, or obtain economic benefit from supposed Israeli violations of international law and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The Council’s reversal occurred just weeks before an imminent court decision, and after fourteen months of court proceedings. During these proceedings, Mr. Palacios successfully argued that the boycott breached individual freedoms, infringed on both EU directives on public procurement and conventions on free trade, and usurped governmental powers regarding foreign affairs.