Hundreds of Palestinians fired after Israel boycott

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The chief executive of SodaStream International Ltd. says he has been forced to lay off hundreds of Palestinian workers after a factory was targeted by an international boycott movement and moved from the West Bank into Israel.

CEO Daniel Birnbaum said the last 74 Palestinian workers left Monday after being denied permits to work inside Israel at the new factory.

The global boycott movement seeks to ostracize Israel by lobbying corporations, artists and academic institutions to sever ties with the Jewish state.

In all, about 500 Palestinians lost their jobs after the factory moved last year following a high-profile boycott campaign against SodaStream.

Birnbaum said Palestinian workers are the main victims of the boycott. But he also criticized the government for not granting the work permits.