Middle East, Europe

‘From the river to the sea:’ Israel condemns Spain's deputy PM’s comments

Outgoing Israeli ambassador in Madrid said 'antisemitic' slogan promotes hate and violence

Alyssa McMurtry  | 23.05.2024 - Update : 23.05.2024
‘From the river to the sea:’ Israel condemns Spain's deputy PM’s comments

OVIEDO, Spain 

The Israeli ambassador to Spain on Thursday condemned the latter's deputy prime minister for using a slogan on Palestine’s liberation.

Deputy Premier Yolanda Diaz's comments came at the end of a social media video where she explained Spain’s move to recognize Palestinian statehood on May 28 is just the beginning.

“We will continue pressuring, from our position in the government, to defend human rights and put an end to the genocide of the Palestinian people. We live in a moment where doing the minimum is, at the same time, heroic and insufficient,” said the leader of the government’s junior coalition partner. “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.”

Later, the Israeli embassy slammed her comments, saying the phrase promotes hate and violence.

“There is no room for antisemitic declarations in a democratic society, and it’s absolutely intolerable that they were spoken by a deputy prime minister,” said Israeli Ambassador Rodica Radian-Gordon in a post on X. This was one of the ambassador’s last official statements before she returns to Israel.

Israel on Wednesday recalled its ambassadors to Spain, Ireland, and Norway after the three EU governments announced they would formally recognize Palestinian statehood next week.

“I’m sorry I have to return to Israel over vain decisions taken by the Spanish government, which will not contribute to peace and security … nor will they facilitate the release of our 128 hostages,” she said.

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