Due to pressure applied by the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement, the Northampton Police Department and the Vermont State Police both abandoned the yearly training trip to Israel, Middle East Monitor reported Sunday.
First held in 2002, the “Resilience and Counter-Terrorism” program is a 7 day conference in which the Israeli military, police, and secret service all train U.S. law enforcement agencies.
A number of groups including ‘Vermont National Lawyers Guild’, ‘Vermonters for Justice in Palestine’, and ‘Jewish Voice for Peace’ (JVP) released a statement Thursday saying that Vermont State Police Director Colonel Birmingham had cancelled the trip in response to the petition against the program.
The press release also stated that Northampton Mayor Narkewicz withdrew Police Commissioner Kasper from the trip “after a meeting with concerned Pioneer Valley residents.”
The press release quoted Mark Hughes, director of the group ’Justice for All’ stating “The tactics taught are inhumane and are used in the continued killing and oppression of communities of color across the nation and the globe.”