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SodaStream to move its West Bank factory, criticized by activists, to southern Israel in 2015

FILE - In this Nov. 22, 2010 file photo, workers stand at the entrance to the Soda Club factory in the Mishor Adumim industrial zone near the Jewish West Bank settlement of Maaleh Adumim. Israeli drink maker SodaStream International Ltd. is to relocate its factory in an Israeli Maaleh Adumim settlement in the West Bank next year to southern Israel, a representative said Wednesday saying the move is strictly for commercial reasons and not due to pressure by pro-Palestinian activists. (AP Photo/Sebastian Scheiner, File)

FILE - In this Nov. 22, 2010 file photo, workers stand at the entrance to the Soda Club factory in the Mishor Adumim industrial zone near the Jewish West Bank settlement of Maaleh Adumim. Israeli drink maker SodaStream International Ltd. is to relocate its factory in an Israeli Maaleh Adumim settlement in the West Bank next year to southern Israel, a representative said Wednesday saying the move is strictly for commercial reasons and not due to pressure by pro-Palestinian activists. (AP Photo/Sebastian Scheiner, File)  (The Associated Press)

A representative for Israeli drink maker SodaStream International Ltd. says its factory in an Israeli settlement in the West Bank will be relocated next year to southern Israel.

Nirit Hurwitz said Wednesday that the facility will move in 2015 to Lehavim, in Israel's southern Negev region. She said the decision to move is for "purely commercial" reasons.

Palestinian activists had launched a campaign boycotting the company because of the factory in an Israeli settlement in the West Bank, a territory captured by Israel in 1967 from Jordan and claimed by the Palestinians.

SodaStream has said it employs hundreds of Palestinians and gives them equal benefits as Israeli workers.

SodaStream CEO Daniel Birnbaum said: "We are working with the Israeli government to secure work permits for our Palestinian employees."