Palestinian-Owned Company Challenges Texas Anti-BDS Law

A Palestinian-owned company filed a lawsuit to challenge Texas anti-BDS law. (Photo: via Wikimedia Commons)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff

A Palestinian-owned company filed a lawsuit to challenge a law preventing the state of Texas from doing business with contractors that support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel, TRT news agency reported. 

The American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) filed a complaint in a Houston federal court on behalf of Rasmy Hassouna, the owner and executive VP of A&R Engineering and Testing Inc.

The lawsuit appeals against a Texas anti-BDS law on constitutional grounds, as it would violate the right of free speech, guaranteed by the First Amendment. 

According to TRT, A&R, which has been contracting in Houston for the last 17 years, was sent a renewal contract on October 13. The contract reportedly required the company to certify that it “is not currently engaging in, and agrees for the duration of this Agreement not to engage in, the boycott of Israel as defined by Section 808.001 of the Texas Government Code.”

Hassouna, who refused to sign the contract, declared in his complaint: 

“Israel is an occupier of my homeland and it is an Apartheid State. It is my right and duty to boycott Israel and any products of Israel. This policy is against my constitutional right and against International Law.”

Hassona demanded the paragraph about Israel being taken off from the contract, TRT reported.

The law, passed in May 2017, is one of the numerous measures advanced in the United States in recent years to criminalize BDS activities. 

Many US citizens, organizations and companies, however, repeatedly challenged such laws, at US Federal courts, as being unconstitutional.

(The Palestine Chronicle)

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