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AP: “Church of Scotland: label settlement products”

AP article from Jerusalem Post, 24th May 2006.

The Church of Scotland has called on European authorities and the World Council of Churches to clearly identify products from illegal Israeli settlements on Palestinian lands, a church official said Wednesday.

The decision by the church’s General Assembly, meeting in Edinburgh, came after delegates were informed that the church had no investments related to what it regards as oppression of the Palestinians.

The General Assembly last year asked the Church and Society Council to see whether concerns about Israel and the Palestinians had any implications for the church’s investment portfolio.

“The Church of Scotland doesn’t hold any relevant investment.” Morag Mylne, the council’s convener (chair), said in a telephone interview.

Mylne, who reported to the General Assembly on Tuesday, said the church advocated clear identification of products from illegal settlements to enable consumers to make informed choices.

The Church of Scotland, formerly the official church in Scotland, is a Presbyterian body.

The Presbyterian Church (USA) last year identified five companies in which it had investments in companies which it said contributed to “ongoing violence that plagues Israel and Palestine.”

The Church of England has also reviewed its investments in US-based Caterpillar Inc., but affirmed this year that it would discuss its concerns with Caterpillar rather than divest its shares.