The Organization for Security and Co-Operation in Europe has issued a damning report on Norwegian Officials’ failure to address anti-Semitism in that country.
The OSCE delegation pointed to a recent survey by Norway’s Holocaust Center suggesting that 38 percent of Norwegians equated Israel’s treatment of Palestinians with how the Nazis treated Jews before World War II.
According to reports Norway’s foreign minister said Norway should promote “a civilized discussion” on the Middle East conflict, and actively oppose those who “demonize” Israel. Israel’s new ambassador to Norway Naim Araidi, who is not Jewish, reportedly called the survey results “frightening” and said it reflected a disturbing lack of knowledge about the Holocaust, the Nazis and the current situation in the Middle East.
As reported on the Jewish Telegraphic Agency website, Aftenposen, Norway’s largest newspaper reported that the OSCE also called for the abolition of a ban on Jewish ritual slaughter, or shechitah, that has been in place in Norway since 1929. Abolishing the ban would be “an important symbolic gesture.”
News of the criticism coincided with the deportation of four Norwegians—including two members of the Norwegian Parliament— from Israel after they were arrested for trying to break Israel’s blockade of Gaza aboard the boat ‘Estelle’