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September 20, 2016 1:51 pm

Israeli Minister: Australian Labor’s Imposed Israel-Travel Restrictions Cause for Deep Concern

avatar by Rachel Frommer

Jerusalem Affairs Minister Ze'ev Elkin. Photo: Facebook.

Jerusalem Affairs Minister Ze’ev Elkin. Photo: Facebook.

A member of Israel’s security cabinet expressed “concern” over the Australian Labor Party’s (ALP) newly published guidelines for MPs traveling to Israel, insisting that they spend equal time in Palestinian territories, The Australian reported.

Jerusalem Affairs and Environmental Protection Minister Ze’ev Elkin said he is worried that “anti-Israelism in Europe and Western society will come to be the modern, politically correct antisemitism,” after a decision was made at the ALP national conference requiring MPs to spend equal time in the PA when taking trips to Israel, funded by Jewish organizations.

According to the report, the announcement follows a failed attempt by ALP members to block Labor politicians from traveling for free to Israel altogether.

“You can see in Europe, what began as BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) activity against the state of Israel (escal­ated) and there was a terrorist ­attack on Jewish communities in France,” Elkin said. “In this context, when we are looking in the last year at the ­increase in anti-Israeli activity in Australia — of course it’s not the mainstream of Australian society or political establishment, but it’s a concern.”

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As The Algemeiner reported, recent anti-Jewish and anti-Israel activity in Australia has included an initiative to block the erection of an eruv in Sydney, slammed as “textbook antisemitism” by religious and political leaders, and thousands of Holocaust-denial fliers distributed across Australian university campuses.

Members of ALP have long supported action requiring its ministers to split their time equally while in Israel. According to The Australian, one of the plan’s major proponents, New South Wales Opposition Leader Luke Foley, was recently found to have failed to follow his own guidelines when on a visit to Israel in 2013.

As The Algemeiner reported, Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop recently wrapped up a trip to Israel, during which Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu accepted her invitation to become the first head of the Jewish state to pay an official visit Down Under.

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