IN SUPPORT OF EFFECTIVE AND CONSTRUCTIVE PEACEMAKING BETWEEN PALESTINIANS AND ISRAELIS THROUGH POSITIVE INVESTMENT IN PALESTINE
The United Methodist Church has committed itself to peacemaking and seeks to act as an advocate for peace in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The United Methodist Church recognizes that true peace must reveal itself in both the spiritual and temporal aspects of life and culture in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
WHEREAS, The United Methodist Church affirms the right and duty of people of all nations to determine their own destiny, (Social Principles, para. 65 B), the preferred solution to this conflict is the creation of two independent sovereign nations, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and in economic justice and cooperation. (Social Principles, para. 165B & C).
WHEREAS, The United Methodist Church has long supported economic justice, we recognize that a viable Palestinian state must have a sustainable financial foundation. To this end, we support positive financial investment for the Palestinians. We also recognize that, at present, the Palestinian civil society must build may the economic base and infrastructure necessary for fully fledged statehood.
WHEREAS, The United Methodist Church values the transformative nature of economic justice for all people, we support positive investment in Palestine as an effective and productive approach to peace making for both Israelis and the Palestinians. In this case in particular, we believe that encouraging investments in Palestine is a positive, transformative strategy to be preferred to the more punitive options of divestment, and boycotts. Boycott, divestment and economic sanction campaigns focus on combating perceived enemies and punishing and blaming one side in a complex conflict, rather than promoting constructive solutions to the conflict and improving the lives of Palestinians.
THEREFORE, The United Methodist Church:
1. Affirms the 2008 General Conference in its rejection of boycott, divestment or economic sanctions as a just or effective way of resolving the Israeli/Palestinian conflict and creating a peaceful two-state solution;
2. Acknowledges that the Church must seize the current opportunity to determine how best to act as a peacemaker in Israel-Palestine in the current historical context – and not fan the flames of conflict by adopting approaches such as boycott, divestment and economic sanctions which are ultimately destructive to peacemaking in Israel and Palestine because they seek primarily to punish and blame one side in a complex conflict, rather than serving the purpose of encouraging reconciliation and raising both people up;
3. Affirms strategies that will help bring about an independent, sovereign Palestinian state as well as peace, prosperity and security for both Palestinians and Israelis. This strategy includes investment in Palestine and support of positive economic growth.
4. Recognizes that the work of nation-building is necessary and productive and without it there can and will be no viable Palestinian state;
5. Commits to study and make recommendations for concrete measures that can be taken by the Church, Church Boards, Agencies, and Church members to encourage, aid and assist the Palestinian people in their efforts in nation building
--adopted by the 2011 North Carolina Annual Conference