Israel Blasts Tunisia's Decision to Sever Relations
Israel blasted on Sunday Tunisia's decision to sever relations with the Jewish state following the emergency Arab summit in Cairo, reported AFP, quoting a foreign ministry statement.
"Israel expresses its disappointment with the Tunisian government's decision today to sever relations with Israel, and close the Tunisian interest office in Tel Aviv and the Israeli interest office in Tunis," the statement said.
Saying it was "surprised" at the decision, the ministry said it appeared that Tunisia had "elected to renounce its potential role as a bridge for conciliation between Israel and its neighbors, therefore harming the critical effort to promote regional peace."
Tunisia announced that it will cut its diplomatic ties with Israel, reported the Jerusalem Post, quoting Israel Radio. Qatar has said it will follow suit, according to the paper.
The move was decided because of "the dangerous and bloody escalation resulting from Israeli aggression against the Palestinian people", and "the growing number of dead and wounded among unarmed Palestinian civilians," a statement by Tunisian foreign ministry said, according to AFP.
It came ahead of the final statement from the Arab summit which took place in Cairo calling for Arab states to take measures against the Jewish state, in response to the violent unrest in the Palestinian territories.
The statement said Tunis considered that the development of its relations with Israel should depend on the progress or otherwise of the Middle East peace process, AFP said.
The two countries have had the lowest possible form of diplomatic representation, since 1996.
Israel has only managed to establish diplomatic relations with three Arab countries: Egypt, under the Camp David accord of 1979, Jordan in 1994 and Mauritania last year.
Oman cut its trade ties with Israel, following air and raid attacks on Palestinian lands in Ramallah and the West Bank 11 days ago - Albawaba.com
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