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Israel-Sweden: What is the Reason of Deteriorated Relations?


Israeli-Swedish relations, because of Sweden’s position on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict have deteriorated during the recent years. However, the statement of the Foreign Minister of Sweden, "made" Israel declare that Sweden’s Foreign Minister is "not welcome" in the country.

The reason for Israel’s anger was that Sweden’s Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom called for an investigation to determine if Israel was guilty of extrajudicial killings of Palestinians. "It is vital that there are thorough, credible investigations into these deaths in order to clarify and bring about possible accountability," Wallstrom told lawmakers, The Jerusalem Post reports.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon called such a statement "biased and hostile," adding that a person, who talks like that, does not understand what situation in the region is.

"Wallstrom’s remarks show that she doesn’t understand what is taking place in our region and is apparently unaware of the harsh situation where Israelis are exposed to the perpetual dangers of murderous terror attacks," Nahshon said, Washington Post reports.

Israeli Foreign Minister’s response to Wallstrom was not the only one. Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely called the comments as a "bad combination of folly and diplomatic stupidity, and Israel will close its door to official visits from Sweden," the Jerusalem Post reports. Moreover, Knesset House Committee chairman David Bitan (Likud), meanwhile, called in a letter to Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein for a cancellation of the Israel-Sweden Parliamentary Friendship Group, claiming that with such actions, Sweden "backs terrorism."

As the escalation in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict continues, Israel becomes more sensitive in what is being said against it. Any criticism is now being perceived as a hostile relation towards it and is being responded accordingly. In this context the deterioration of Israel-Sweden relations should be considered as withing the limits of "logic."


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