Johansson steps down from Oxfam over SodaStream controversy

Jan. 30, 2014 at 10:20 AM
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LOS ANGELES, Jan. 30 (UPI) -- Actress Scarlett Johansson has cut ties with the charity Oxfam International amid criticism over her support for an Israeli company based in the West Bank.

"Scarlett Johansson has respectfully decided to end her ambassador role with Oxfam after eight years," Johansson's spokesman said in a statement to the Hollywood Reporter Wednesday.

"She and Oxfam have a fundamental difference of opinion in regards to the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement. She is very proud of her accomplishments and fundraising efforts during her tenure with Oxfam," the statement said.

Johansson, 29, was this month named the first global brand ambassador of SodaStream International Ltd., which has been criticized by pro-Palestinian activists for maintaining a large factory in an Israeli settlement in the West Bank, the entertainment industry trade newspaper noted.

Johansson addressed the controversy last week, saying she is a "supporter of economic cooperation and social interaction between a democratic Israel and Palestine," THR said.

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