US fast-food chain McDonald's refusal to open a branch in Jewish communities located in Samaria sparked indignation among disabled IDF veterans on Tuesday, writes The Jerusalem Post.
In a sign of protest, the veterans set up mock signs in front of McDonald's in Tel Aviv, as they claimed the fast-food chain’s policy resembled that of the BDS movement (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement) — a Palestinian-led campaign promoting various forms of boycott against Israel.
Red signs erected in front of McDonald's entrances stated in Hebrew, English, and Arabic:
“Israelis please note!”
“Area M' is ahead of you, which is controlled by a company that boycotts parts of Israel. By entering this area you become a supporter of the boycott".
The large signs were a reference to similar signs seen in the West Bank, warning Israeli citizens against entering Palestinian Authority areas.
On their Facebook page, the IDF Disabled Veterans Forum, consisting of hundreds of injured soldiers, informed that they were the ones who organised the protest action.
“McDonald's decision not to open branches across the Green Line is despicable”, they stated.
“But if Omri Padan, who heads the company and was one of the founders of Peace Now, wants to do so — that's his right”.
“But the State of Israel has a law — the Boycott Law… the idea that a company that boycotts parts of the State of Israel will compete in a government tender and stand proudly at the entrance to the State of Israel is intolerable”, the vets said.
The current protest action came amid a government tender for the franchise to open at Ben-Gurion International Airport.
Earlier, a leading settlement official demanded that fast-food giant McDonald’s be struck off a tender to operate fast-food eateries in the country’s main international airport because it refuses to open any branches in the West Bank.
McDonald’s used to operate two restaurants in Ben Gurion Airport, but closed them in 2011 after losing a tender to Burger Ranch.