Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad signed Wednesday a new amendment to a law in the Islamic Republic that forbids the airing of advertisements for "Zionist companies." The blacklist of prohibited companies is comprised mainly of international companies, mainly American, owned by Jews or that operate branches in Israel.
Among those on the list are Coca Cola, Nestle, Intel, and IBM.
The boycott is rooted in Iran's "Palestinian support law," which acts as a response to assertions that Israel prevented goods from entering the Gaza Strip during its raid on the flotilla.
Coca Cola. In Ahmadinejad's crosshairs. (Photo: Dana Koppel)
The amendment obligates a number of government ministries to establish a committee to identify and locate products from "Zionist" companies being sold in Iran. In addition, this committee will be charged with finding the names of leading figures in the blacklisted companies so that they may be boycotted as well.
This move is another link in the chain of efforts made by Iran to isolate Israel in the world in accordance with a decision passed in Iranian parliament on the matter. Iran also plans on bringing forth a resolution to boycott Israel in the UN and in other international forums, including the Organization of the Islamic Conference and the Arab League.
The amendment also obligates the Iranian foreign ministry to present annual reports on the progress made in the Israeli boycott.
Beyond wanting to bring harm to Israel, the amendment may also be an indirect response to the new round of sanctions recently imposed on Iran by the West over its nuclear program. The move is intended mainly for internal purposes, in order to increase civilian support of the Palestinians.