IDAN HANEGEV INDUSTRIAL PARK, Israel – The chief executive of SodaStream, the beverage maker that is shuttering its West Bank factory in the face of international boycott calls, is accusing his company's critics of anti-Semitism and hurting the interests of the Palestinian workers they claim to protect.
SodaStream has been at the center of an international campaign calling for boycotting, divesting and sanctioning Israeli companies. It announced it was closing the West Bank factory last year, citing financial reasons. But the so-called BDS movement declared victory and said its pressure was behind the decision.
Standing in the company's new factory in Israel's southern Negev Desert, CEO Daniel Birnbaum said Wednesday the boycott movement has only had a "marginal" effect on his business and accused boycotters of spreading lies.