Skip to content
Subscriber Only

McDonald's Feels Heat in Israel After Shunning West Bank

A McDonald's restaurant in Tel Aviv
A McDonald's restaurant in Tel AvivPhotograph by Hamilton/REA/Redux

McDonald’s prefers to serve its burgers without politics. But the company now finds itself on the front lines of a heated dispute over investment in Israeli-occupied territories, after its licensee in Israel refused to open a restaurant in a West Bank settlement.

Rami Levy, who is developing a shopping mall in the West Bank settlement of Ariel, told Bloomberg News that the licensee declined to open an outlet in the mall because it is on land captured by Israel in the 1967 Arab-Israeli war. The licensee, Omri Padan, is a co-founder of Peace Now, an Israeli group that opposes Jewish settlements in the occupied territories.