Israeli Economy Minister Bennett Mocks Boycott Threats, Again
Israeli Economy Minister Naftali Bennett on Monday mocked the threat of economic boycotts against Israel, referring to a headline from the Israeli daily Ha’aretz that said U.S. technology giants Microsoft and Amazon were eyeing Israeli cyber-security firms to acquire as research and development centers.
Bennett’s comments came a day after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, speaking at his cabinet meeting, had to address the boycott threat directly, describing calls to “impose a boycott” on Israel as “immoral” and “unjust,” and said they would be ineffective at compelling his government to make any decision that would be against Israel’s interests.
The two Israeli leaders were responding to comments on Saturday from U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, who warned that a failure of the current peace talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority could lead to more international boycotts against the Jewish state.
“Today’s status quo absolutely, to a certainty, I promise you, 100 per cent, cannot be maintained. It’s not sustainable. It’s illusionary. There’s a momentary prosperity, there’s a momentary peace,” Kerry said on Saturday, at a Munich conference.
On Sunday, Bennett had responded: “We expect our friends around the world to stand beside us against anti-Semitic boycott efforts targeting Israel, and not for them to be their amplifier.”
Last month, Bennett also took to Facebook to question threats of international isolation by recounting the many international meetings he’d held that day.
On Facebook, Bennett listed his “day so far,” which included meeting an Indian delegation to establish a joint research fund, establishing a booster for Israeli start-up companies in Shanghai, China, and approving final guidelines for joint technology investments with Germany. Earlier that week it had been reported that several Northern European-based pension funds were considering dumping their Israeli investments to boycott the Jewish state.
That day, he’d also met with the Canadian Prime Minister and Canada’s Ministers of Trade, Industry and Natural Resources to discuss upgrading Israel’s Free Trade Zone agreement with the ally, while he attended a presentation on progress on Free Trade Zone negotiations with Russia, Belarus, and Kazakhstan, and granted a green light for a feasibility survey towards opening Free Trade Zone negotiations with Vietnam.
“This international isolation situation is not easy,” Bennett joked online.