Saudi Arabia awarded French company Alstom a multi-million dollar contract for the construction of Haramain Express Railway, to link the holy cities of Makkah and Madina. Alstom is in violation of international law for its part in the construction of the Jerusalem Light Rail, which will link illegal Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territory (including East Jerusalem) with the city of Jerusalem. The construction of the light rail is part of a wider Israeli policy to ethnically cleanse the Palestinians from Jerusalem and turn permanent the illegal occupation of the city.
The decision by the Saudi Arabian authorities is in violation of its own international commitments. The Arab League barred member states from dealing with companies involved in the construction of Jerusalem Light Rail project. The Saudi contract sends a signal of approval for Alstom’s actions in Jerusalem and highlights the lack of integrity of the Haramain project: the Saudi Arabian government has chosen to link two of Islam’s holiest cities by sponsoring the colonization of another.
Across the world a divestment campaign is taking pace against Alstom and its partner company Veolia, with victories in Sweden and France. In 2006, Dutch ASN Bank took the responsible decision to divest from the project. Alstom and Veolia are accused by Palestinian civil society, represented by the BDS National Committee, BNC, of complicity in grave violation of international law and Palestinian rights for their role in the JLR project. Despite the pressure, the two companies have refused to end their participation in the project. With construction at an advanced stage, Alstom and Veolia are guilty of actively colluding with Israeli apartheid.
1. Write to the Saudi Railway Organization and to the Saudi Arabian diplomatic representation in your country demanding immediate cancellation of the contract with Alstom.
* Saudi Railway Organisation contact details (http://tiny.cc/llcfC)
karni [at] saudirailways.org (Vice President)
shafqatrabbani [at] sro.org.sa (Project Manager)
salim [at] sro.org.sa (Project Manager)
sohail [at] sro.org.sa (Project Engineer)
* Saudi Arabian diplomatic representations worldwide: http://tiny.cc/NvtOd
Please bcc us on your correspondence: saudialstomdivestment [at] gmail.com
2. Sign the petition: http://www.petitiononline.com/BDSaudi/petition.html
3. Write about this issue in your local media. Discuss it in your local mosque and community centers. Participate in actions for boycott, divestment and sanctions of Israel.
Find Out More!
The Case Against Veolia and Alstrom:
* GulfNews: Company in Saudi rail project linked to Israel: http://www.gulfnews.com/news/gulf/saudi_arabia/10318520.html
* Divestment campaign gains momentum in Europe: http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article10418.shtml
* Veolia looses 3.5 billion EUR contract in Sweden: http://www.diakonia.se/sa/node.asp?node=2807
* PLO takes Veolia Transport and Alstom to court in France: http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article9104.shtml
* Legal action in France against Veolia and Anstrom: http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article6674.shtml
* Time to hold Veolia to account: http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article10295.shtml
The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestinians From Jerusalem:
* Ethnic Cleansing in East Jerusalem: http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article10381.shtml
* Civic Coalition to Defend Palestinian Rights in Jerusalem: http://www.ccdprj.ps
* Israeli House Demolitions in Jerusalem Slideshow: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/interactive/2009/mar/06/israel-palestinian-territories
* Policy of Residency Revocation of Palestinians in Jerusalem: http://www.btselem.org/English/Jerusalem/Revocation_of_Residency.asp
* Global Movement for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions of Israel: http://www.bdsmovement.net/