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Israel accuses EU countries of bias

Ambassadors of the UK, France, Italy and Spain were summoned over their ‘one-sided stance against Israel’

Published: Updated:

Israel’s foreign minister summoned European ambassadors on Friday over pro-Palestinian “bias” which has harmed peace chances, Agence France-Presse reported his spokesman as saying.

Avigdor Lieberman “ordered to summon the ambassadors of the UK, France, Italy and Spain and stress to them that their perpetual one-sided stance against Israel and in favour of the Palestinians is unacceptable and creates the impression they are only seeking ways to blame Israel,” his spokesman said in a statement.

“Beyond being biased, unbalanced and ignoring the reality on the ground, the positions held by these states significantly harm the possibility of reaching some sort of agreement between the sides,” the statement read.

Lieberman’s orders came after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Thursday that some European Union states had called in Israeli ambassadors to hear protests at Israel’s latest announcement of settlement-building.

Netanyahu criticized the move as “hypocritical.”

Last week, Israel issued tenders for 1,400 new homes in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, part of the territory Palestinians want for a state, Reuters reported.

Most countries deem Israel’s settlements illegal and an obstacle to peacemaking.

Netanyahu, however, did not name the EU countries he said had summoned Israeli ambassadors but Israel Radio identified them as Britain, France, Italy and Spain.

“When did the EU call in the Palestinian ambassadors to complain about the incitement (they espouse) that calls for Israel’s destruction?” he said.


(With AFP and Reuters)