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Ben & Jerry’s sues its parent company, Unilever, to stop the sale of an Israeli company.

New York (Reuters) -Ben & Jerry’s sued its parent company, Unilever Plc (NYSE:UL), on Tuesday to stop the sale of its Israeli business to a local licensee. The company said that selling its ice cream in the occupied West Bank goes against its values.

The complaint that was filed in the U.S. District Court in Manhattan said that the sale that was announced on June 29 threatened the integrity of the Ben & Jerry’s brand. When Unilever bought the company in 2000, the Ben & Jerry’s board kept its independence to protect the brand.

The complaint said that an injunction against transferring the business and trademarks to Avi Zinger, who runs American Quality Products Ltd, was necessary to “protect the brand and social integrity that Ben & Jerry’s has worked for decades to build.”

Ben & Jerry’s said that its board decided to sue by a vote of 5 to 2, with the two Unilever appointees voting against it.

In a statement, Unilever said that it doesn’t talk about lawsuits that are still going on, but that it had the right to sell the disputed business and that the deal was already done.

In a separate statement, Alyza Lewin, Zinger’s lawyer, said, “It’s a done deal.” Zinger had sued Ben & Jerry’s in March for not renewing his licence, but the sale ended the case.

The dispute shows how hard it is for consumer brands to take a stand on Israeli settlements in the West Bank, which is occupied by the United States.

Most countries think that settlements are against the law. In April 2019, Airbnb Inc. changed its mind about a decision it had made five months earlier to stop listing properties in the settlements.

Last July, Ben & Jerry’s announced that it would stop selling its products in the occupied West Bank and parts of East Jerusalem. It also said it would end its 30-year partnership with Zinger.

Israel was angry about the move, and some Jewish groups said it was anti-Semitic. Some investors sold their shares of Unilever, including at least seven U.S. states.

Unilever owns more than 400 brands, such as Dove soap, Knorr soup, Hellmann’s mayonnaise, and Vaseline skin lotion.

Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield started Ben & Jerry’s in a gas station that had been fixed up in 1978.

They no longer worked for Ben & Jerry’s, but in July of last year, they wrote in the New York Times that they supported Israel but did not agree with its “illegal occupation” of the West Bank.

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