Google employees urge firm to support Palestinians: Report

A Jewish employee group calls on the company’s CEO to condemn harm done by the Israeli military to Palestinians.

The letter also calls on the company to review contracts and terminate those with 'institutions that support Israeli violations of Palestinian rights'. [File: Mahmud Hams/The Associated Press]

A group of Jewish Google employees has called on the company to condemn the actions of the Israeli military amid the ongoing bombardment of the Gaza Strip and to support Palestinians, according to a report.

In an internal letter, the employees asked CEO Sundar Pichai to publicly condemn the attacks, including “direct recognition of the harm done to Palestinians by Israeli military and gang violence”, The Verge news site reported.

The appeal is being made by the Jewish Diaspora in Tech employee resource group, a new group formed last year after splitting from “Jewglers” Google employee group, which has been accused of stifling criticism of Israel, The Verge reported.

Beyond the public statement, the letter calls on Google to “center” the voices of Palestinian Google employees going forward; fund relief for Palestinians “affected by military violence”; “reject any definitions of antisemitism that hold that criticism of Israel or Zionism is anti-semitism”; and the review and termination of “contracts with institutions that support Israeli violations of Palestinian rights, such as the Israeli Defense Forces”.

The letter had garnered 250 signatures as of Tuesday, according to The Verge.

Members of Jewish Disapora in Tech told the news site they were inspired to write the letter after the so-called “Jewglers” group did not put out a statement condemning the violence against Palestinians.

As of Wednesday, at least 219 Palestinians, including 63 children, have been killed in Israeli attacks on Gaza, which have destroyed infrastructure and hundreds of homes.

At least 12 Israelis, including two children, have been killed by rockets fired by armed groups from Gaza.

The escalation came after protests over the forced expulsion of Palestinian families from the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood in occupied East Jerusalem and crackdowns and raids on the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound – Islam’s third holiest site.

Amid the escalation, there have also been intercommunal clashes throughout Israel and deadly crackdowns by Israeli security forces on protests in the occupied West Bank.

Source: Al Jazeera