A senior official at the Israeli Foreign Ministry criticized the Israeli embassy in the European Union, calling its conduct a failure.
In the coming days Deputy Foreign Minister Ze’ev Elkin intends to call in the Embassy representatives in Brussels to receive clarifications.
A senior diplomatic source told Reshet Bet that embassy staff were supposed to be aware several months ago of the EU document banning all contact with Israeli entities in Judea, Samaria, East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights. The source emphasized that such vital intelligence “should have reached us two months ago, so that we could prepare accordingly.”
Finance Minister Yair Lapid said that the controversial EU directive undermines the efforts of U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry to bring both parties to the peace negotiation table. According to Lapid, the EU move signals to the Palestinians that there is no diplomatic or economic cost to their continued refusal to return to negotiations, causing them to believe that Israel will have to give in to political and economic pressure.
Nevertheless, says Lapid, the decision joins a long line of decisions that have lead to the isolation of Israel in the world, and every day when Israel is not in negotiations for peace further damaged our international standing.
The Foreign Ministry intends to ask the EU to suspend their directive until after the Kerry efforts to reach a breakthrough in reviving the talks have run their course.
On the right, many have been telling Prime Minister Netanyahu to consider severing the European involvement in the peace process with the Palestinians, as well as any economic initiatives by the EU in the area. They also suggest rescinding any gesture to the Palestinians that may have been considered in support of Kerry’s efforts.