The long-running ’Boycott, Disinvestment and Sanctions’ campaign against Israel is in retaliation against Tel Aviv’s treatment of Palestinians. Groups in France stepped up their activities after the war in Gaza just over two years ago, and in some instances, they have entered supermarkets to try to discourage shoppers from buying Israeli products.
Olivia Zemor is one of four defendants accused variously of taking part in the campaigns and posting videos of them on the internet. Prosecutors and Jewish lobbyists claim these activities amount to incitement of racial hatred against Israel.
Supporters cheered the defendants as they left court. So far ten such cases have been heard in France. The outcome of this trial and an appeal against the only conviction so far depend largely on yet another case - this time being heard by France’s constitutional court. It must decide if the alleged offences contravene the country’s complex penal code. The only worry is that a guilty verdict for the accused, will raise some questions about freedom of scpeech in France.
The defendants must now wait until October when the judges are expected to give their verdicts.