Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Dubai Ports World participates in Arab boycott against Israel

The parent company of Dubai Ports World, the Dubai-based company now attempting to purchase American ports participates in the Arab boycott against Israel, contrary to US law.Jerusalem Post | Breaking News from Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World

The firm, Dubai Ports World, is seeking control over 21 US ports(not 6 as commonly reported), including those in New York, Miami, Philadelphia and Baltimore. It's entirely owned by the Government of Dubai via a holding company called the Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation (PCZC), made up of the Dubai Port Authority, the Dubai Customs Department and the Jebel Ali Free Zone Area.

"Yes, of course the boycott is still in place and is still enforced," Muhammad Rashid a-Din, a staff member of the Dubai Customs Department's Office for the Boycott of Israel, told the Post in a telephone interview.

"If a product contained even some components that were made in Israel, and you wanted to import it to Dubai, it would be a problem," he said.

A-Din said that while the main office for the anti-Israel boycott sits in Damascus, he and his fellow staff members are paid employees of the Dubai Customs Department, which is a division of the PCZC, the same Dubai government-owned entity that runs Dubai Ports World.

Moreover, the Post also found that the website for Dubai's Jebel Ali Free Zone Area, part of the PCZC, advises importers that they will need to comply with the terms of the boycott.

In a section entitled "Frequently Asked Questions", the site lists six documents that are required in order to clear an item through the Dubai Customs Department. One of them, called a "Certificate of Origin," "is used by customs to confirm the country of origin and needs to be seen by the office which ensures any trade boycotts are enforced," according to the website.

A-Din at the Israel boycott office confirmed that his office examines certificates of origin as a means of verifying whether a product originated in the Jewish state.

On at least three separate occasions last year, according to the Jerusalem Post, companies were fined by the US government's Office of Anti-boycott Compliance, an arm of the Commerce Department, on charges connected to boycott-related requests they had received from the Government of Dubai.

US law makes it illegal for firms to comply with such requests or to cooperate with attempts by Arab governments to boycott Israel.

In one instance, according to a Commerce Department press release, a New York-based exporter agreed to pay a fine for having "failed to report in a timely manner its receipts of requests from Dubai" to provide certification that its products had not been made in Israel.

Dubai is the same country that hosts the government funded Zayed Center, known for funding some of the most outrageous Jew hatred, Holocaust denial, anti-American conspiracy theories and hate speech to be found anywhere on the planet, as I reported

For instance, the Zayed Center has hosted Thierry Meyssan, the French author of "The Appalling Fraud," which claims that the U.S. military staged the 9/11 attacks. The center translated Mr. Meyssan's book into Arabic, hailed its publication and widely advertised and distributed the book all over the Arab World.

Is the Bush Administration prepared to turn over our ports management to a company owned by a country that proudly boycotts Israel, breaks American law and makes a fetish of government funded anti-Semitism?

1 comment:

Rosey said...

Yikes! Thanks for reporting on this.