WHO IS VEOLIA?
Veolia is a multinational company operating in water management, waste management, transport and energy services which holds and bids for large and long-term contracts with local authorities in the UK and across the world. They are currently bidding for North London Waste Authority 30 year waste processing contract worth billions of pounds.
WHY SAY NO?
Veolia and its subsidiary companies are working the Occupied Territories of Palestine on infrastructure projects for illegal settlements and in so doing are complicit in Israel’s crimes under international law, specifically the Fourth Geneva convention articles 49 and 53, the Hague Conventions 1897 and 1907 and contrary to six UN Security Council Resolutions.
Security Council resolution 465 unanimously:
“Calls upon all States not to provide Israel with any assistance to be used specifically in connection with settlements in the occupied territories.”
Veolia is complicit in supporting Israel to break international law in the Occupied Territories of Palestine by servicing transport and waste agreements for illegal Israeli settlements in the following ways:
- Veolia was a lead partner in the Citi-pass consortium which constructed the Jerusalem Light Railway specifically linking illegal settlements in East Jerusalem with West Jerusalem.
- Veolia will assist in running the Jerusalem Light Railway and its discriminatory operational recruitment campaign excludes Palestinians by requiring candidates to speak Hebrew as mother-tongue and past military/ civic service. Past military/ civic service discriminates against Palestinians both in occupied Jerusalem and the West Bank as well as those living in Israel because they do not serve as conscripts; civic duties are managed by bodies directing work almost entirely within Jewish communities.
- Veolia subsidiary Connex runs two bus services which use roads linking illegal West Bank settlements built on Palestinian land.
- Veolia subsidiary TMM has been operating the Tovlan landfill site which processes waste from illegal settlements and is located in occupied territory, Veolia continues in a consultancy role to the current owners – the illegal settlement itself.
Illegal settlements by Israel in the Occupied Territories are not only illegal they also have a serious daily impact on Palestinian communities close to where they are sited including:
- land and property theft and destruction
- reduced water supply
- reduced access to farm land
- settler destruction of crops
- restricted movement of Palestinians hindering access to health, education and social resources
- increased risk of violence against civilians
- pollution of Palestinian land with settlement sewage.
WHY does it matter to the UK?
- The Foreign Office states:
“Attempts by Israel to alter the character or demography of East Jerusalem are unacceptable and extremely provocative. Settlements, as well as the evictions and demolitions of Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem are illegal.”
- Alistair Burt, U.K. Minister for The Middle East, speaking while on a recent visit to The West Bank, declared:
“Our position on settlements is generally well known. We hold settlements to be illegal in the Occupied Territories.
- UK is a High Contracting party to the Geneva Conventions which means:
“Each High Contracting Party shall take measures necessary for the suppression of all acts contrary to the provisions of the present Convention”
- The Security Council:
“calls upon all states not to provide assistance to be used in connection with settlements in the Occupied Territories”
WHY my local authority?
Under the Public Services Regulations (2006) specific section Regulation 23(4)(e) states that:
- the Council can “treat an economic operator as ineligible or decide not to select an economic operator” on the grounds of grave misconduct.
Is complicity in breaches of international humanitarian law and UN Security Council resolutions grave misconduct?
It seems likely that it would not accord with any of the responsibilities of states, either at central or local government level, as outlined by international convention and UN Security Council if they were to award a contract to a company that had provided assistance to illegal settlements.
WHAT to do now?
Veolia is currently a preferred bidder for the North London Waste Authority 30 year waste processing contract.
As UK taxpayers we demand that our council tax is not used to pay a company complicit in breaking Israel’s flagrant breaches of international law.
If you think it is WRONG or ILLEGAL for the North London Waste Authority to be considering awarding this significant and substantial contract to Veolia for the reasons outlined above please:
- Join the NO 2 Veolia Action Group
- Raise your concerns with your local councillor about the award at their regular surgery
- Write to the councillor from your borough who represents you on the North London Waste Authority committee stating your views