Green Party presidential nominee Jill Stein endorsed the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement (BDS) in a statement released last week.
The statement describes BDS as “a peaceful, nonviolent set of actions organized by civil society across the world aimed to end Israeli apartheid, occupation, war crimes, and systematic human rights abuses.”
The Green Party has long expressed its support for the BDS movement. The party’s current platform calls for maintaining boycotts and divestments “until Israel meets its obligation to recognize the Palestinian people’s inalienable right to self-determination and fully complies with the precepts of international law.”
The Green Party first endorsed BDS in November 2015, just months after the Palestinian Civil Society launched their call for boycott, divestment and sanctions against Israel.
Stein is the first presidential candidate to ever endorse BDS. The issue of BDS is increasingly becoming a topic of political conversation. Democratic candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders have both addressed the movement in the course of the election.
Presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton described BDS as “alarming” in a speech to AIPAC, and called for unity to fight against the boycotts.
In an interview on All in with Chris Hayes Sanders said that there was some level of anti-Semitism in BDS. However Sanders also named BDS supporter James Zogby as a member of the Democratic Party platform drafting committee.
Stein’s endorsement also comes just days after New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo signed an executive order commanding state entities to divest from public funds supporting BDS.
Besides endorsing BDS, Stein criticized the United States for encouraging “the worst tendencies of the Israeli government.” The statement calls for ending military and economic support to the Israeli government in response to war crimes and violations against international law.
“Instead of allying with the courageous proponents of peace and human rights within Palestine and Israel, our government has rewarded consistent abusers of human rights,” the statement reads.
Stein’s campaign also criticized U.S. foreign policy in general, citing the economic and human cost of “our failed wars of the past 14 years.”