CJPME Factsheet 240, created April 2024: This factsheet offers insights into The Aldo Group, a retail company specializing in footwear and accessories, founded in Montreal in 1972 by Aldo Bensadoun. It delves into reasons for boycotting Aldo due to its operation of stores in illegal Israeli settlements in occupied Palestinian territories, violating international law and supporting the occupation of Palestinian land. The document advocates for a boycott until Aldo ceases its presence in these settlements, aligning with Palestinian civil society's call to end complicity in oppression.

Boycott Campaign: ALDO

Factsheet Series No. 240, created: April 2024, Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East

What is The Aldo Group?

Founded in 1972 in Montreal, Quebec, by Aldo Bensadoun, The ALDO Group is an online and brick-and-mortar retail company specializing in shoes, boots, sandals, handbags, and accessories. Its subsidiaries include Call It Spring, Aldo Israel LTD, Aldo Accessories, Aldo Group International AG, and ALDO U.S. Inc.

Why boycott Aldo?

In 1994, Aldo entered into a franchise agreement in Israel,[1] and subsequently opened locations in illegal Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories. In particular, the Aldo Group owns and operates one ALDO shop and one Call It Spring shop in a mall in the settlement neighbourhood of Ramot in occupied East Jerusalem.[2]

Under Article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, Israel’s construction of settlements in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, is illegal.[3] By operating retail stores in an Israeli settlement, Aldo is in stark violation of international law, and directly complicit in the theft and occupation of Palestinian land.

In 2005, Palestinian civil society called for a boycott of all companies that are complicit in the oppression of Palestinians.[4] Canadians should refuse to spend money at Aldo stores so long as it is participating in Israel’s illegal settlements.

What’s wrong with companies being in the settlements?

All Israeli settlements in occupied Palestinian territory are illegal under international law. This was reaffirmed by the UN Security Council Resolution in Resolution 2334, which clearly states that “the establishment by Israel of settlements in the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, has no legal validity and constitutes a flagrant violation under international law.”[5]

Moreover, settlement activity includes the theft and exploitation of Palestinian land, resources, and labour, and businesses profiting from this activity are complicit in these crimes. Further, these settlements obstruct and restrict the access of Palestinians to agricultural land because of settlement roads, fenced-off areas, and increased frequency of incidents of settler violence.[6] The United Nations Human Rights Council has called upon businesses to comply with international law and “avoid contributing to the establishment or maintenance of Israeli settlements or the exploitation of natural resources of the Occupied Palestinian Territories.”[7]

When will the boycott of Aldo end?

The boycott will end once The Aldo Group closes its stores in occupied East Jerusalem and withdraws completely from Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories.


[1] ALDO, “About Aldo,” Accessed April 17, 2024.

[2] Who Profits Research Center, “Aldo,” January 6, 2022.

[3] Amnesty International, “Chapter 3: Israeli Settlements and International Law,” January 30, 2019.

[4] “Palestinian Civil Society Call for BDS,” BDS Movement, July 2005, https://bdsmovement.net/call

[5] United Nations Security Council, “Resolution 2334,” December 23, 2016.

[6] Human Rights Council, “Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and in the Occupied Syrian Golan,” March 9, 2015.

[7] United Nations General Assembly, “Resolution adopted by the Human Rights Council on 24 March 2016, Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and in the occupied Syrian Golan,” A/HRC/RES/31/36, April, 2016.

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