CODEPINK's Stolen Beauty is a boycott campaign against Ahava Dead Sea Laboratories and its products. Ahava markets its products, including Dead Sea mineral bath salts, as “Made in Israel,” with the slogan “This Leaf has Nothing to Hide.” But in fact its products are manufactured in a factory compound located in an illegal settlement in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, and it uses resources stolen from Palestinian land, in direct contravention of international law.
CODEPINK calls on all people of conscience to join our boycott against Ahava.
The goals of CODEPINK's Stolen Beauty campaign are to hold Ahava accountable for its profiteering and breaching of international law, to educate our communities about the ongoing occupation of Palestine, and to build public support for a just and sustainable peace for both Israelis and Palestinians. CODEPINK takes no position on a one-state or two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and believes all parties should respect international law, including relevant UN Security Council resolutions and the Geneva Convention.
Background of the campaign
- In 2005 a broad group of Palestinian Civil Society groups called for an international movement for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) for Palestine and against Israel's violations of Palestinian human rights and international law.
- In 2009 a group of Jewish and Palestinian citizens of Israel joined the movement by announcing they were “supporting the Palestinian BDS call from within” and calling on people around the world to support the BDS Movement as a way to pressure Israel into compliance with international law.
- The Israeli Coalition of Women for Peace, a coalition with whom CODEPINK has partnered on a recent fact-finding trip to Israel, has identified Ahava as a company directly benefiting from the occupation of the Palestinian West Bank, and whose practices are against international law (see their Who Profits website for more information.
- Boycotting Ahava offers CODEPINK a way to join the International Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement to make the illegal occupation of the Palestinian territories less profitable.
- Worldwide support for the boycott movement is growing, following Israel's brutal assault of Gaza in January killed more than 1,300 Gazan civilians, injured 5,300, destroyed approximately 4,000 homes and displaced 50,000 people into temporary U.N. shelters, creating what UN officials called a "catastrophic situation."
- The boycott is more urgent than ever now, in the face of Israel's 21-month ongoing blockade of Gazan borders (which forbids most food, medicine, aid and reconstruction materials from passing through), Israel's continued demolition of Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem, building of settlements in occupied lands, and the land appropriations and violent repression in the West Bank.
- Ahava products are widely stocked in cosmetics stores and pharmacies and are very well known, making the company an easy-to-recognize and influential target.
- Ahava, formally Ahava Dead Sea Laboratories (www.ahava.co.il), is a privately held Israeli cosmetics company that manufactures products using minerals and mud from the captured natural resources of the Dead Sea in the occupied Palestinian territories.
- Ahava products are labeled as of 'Israeli origin,' however the company's main factory and its visitors' center are located in the Israeli settlement of Mitzpe Shalem in the Occupied Territory of the Palestinian West Bank.
- According to international public law, including the relevant UN Security Council Resolutions, the West Bank cannot be considered to be part of the State of Israel. Thus, this labeling is false and illegal.
- This also means Ahava profits by stealing, manufacturing and selling resources from Palestine: because it harvests minerals from mud pulled from the Dead Sea, from the Occupied West Bank (Palestinian) land, it is technically stealing resources. The fourth Geneva Convention explicitly forbids an occupying power from removing the captured natural resources for its own use, and we see this as another charge for which this company should be held accountable.
Ahava's use of Sex in the City star Kristin Davis as its spokeswoman makes its hypocrisy an even more noteworthy target: Davis is also a spokeswoman for Oxfam, which has repeatedly decried Israeli depredations in Palestine and has been particularly vocal about the fraudulent claims made by some Israeli companies that their products are “Made in Israel” when they are produced in Occupied Palestine.
For more information:
- •On our campaign, recent protest events and more, go to stolenbeauty.org.
- On the manufacturer and its involvement in the occupation, go to “Who Profits from the Occupation?” (a project of The Israeli Coalition of Women for Peace)
- On the international Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Campaign, go to Global BDS Movement for Palestine