Oxfam denies split with Sex and the City star

Oxfam International is denying a report last week that it cut ties with “Sex and the City” star Kristin Davis because the actress endorses an Israeli company that manufactures products beyond the Green Line.

The New York Post, citing a letter being circulated last week, reported that Davis was no longer working as an Oxfam spokeswoman because she does ads and is a spokeswoman for Ahava cosmetics, an Israeli firm that makes products in the Mitzhe Shalem settlement in the West Bank.

“When Kristin signed the contract with Ahava she wasn’t aware of the controversy around settlement trade and Oxfam didn’t know she had signed with Ahava,” a manager for Oxfam’s ambassador program said in the letter cited by the Post. The article was headlined “Sex Star, Oxfam Part Ways.”

Oxfam spokesman Matt Grainger said, however, that Davis and Oxfam have not cut ties but are figuring out how to handle an issue that could become a “distraction” from Oxfam’s work. The group, he said, has advocated against settlements in the past. The Jerusalem Post quoted Grainger as saying that Oxfam has no short-term projects in the pipeline for Davis.

Davis, whose character Charlotte York converted to Judaism on “Sex and the City,” visited Israel for the first time last spring. Speaking to reporters at the time, she declined to discuss Middle East politics or the peace process. She praised Israeli women for “being comfortable in their own skins.”

A spokeswoman for Davis told the New York Post, “Kristin is passionate about her relationship with Oxfam, and she intends to work with them and other humanitarian causes for years to come.”

“We have an ongoing relationship,” said Oxfam’s Grainger, whose organization works to end poverty and injustice around the world. “She remains our ambassador and supporter. We’re working through the issue of Ahava together.”

He added, “We wouldn’t tell her what to do.”


JTA
and the Jerusalem Post contributed to this report.