Palestinian premier Salam Fayyad vowed on Wednesday to step up ‘peaceful resistance’ against Israeli occupation by boycotting settlement goods throughout the West Bank.
"There has been progress in the boycott of settlement products, which comes from the idea of popular peaceful resistance, and I hope we will rid our markets of all settlement goods by the end of the year," he told an international conference in the West Bank village of Bilin.
The village has been the scene of weekly protests against Israel’s controversial separation barrier, during which youths chant slogans and hurl stones at Israeli troops, who respond with tear gas and rubber bullets.
The conference in support of non-violent struggle was attended by hundreds of Palestinians as well as 250 foreigners and 150 Israelis, according to organizers, who said many foreign delegations were absent because of European flight cancellations.
Fayyad renewed a pledge to carry out development projects in so-called Area C, parts of the West Bank under complete Israeli military control that account for more than 60 percent of the territory.
"We will keep working on our project to build our state in Area C and on the other side of the wall, because we consider that all land occupied in 1967 is Palestinian land and not disputed territory," he said.
Israel says the barrier is necessary to protect its citizens from attacks, while the Palestinians view it as part of a land grab aimed at carving off key swathes of their promised future state.