Israeli minister slams John Kerry over boycott warning
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has come under intense fire from Israel's economics minister for warning against a growing boycott movement against Israel should peace talks with Palestine fail.
Israeli minister Naftali Bennett said that Israel expects its international friends to stand beside and support it against "anti-Semitic boycott efforts" rather than amplifying them, the Associated Press reported.
His comments came after Kerry, whilst attending a security conference in Germany, warned that if Palestinian-Israeli peace talks fall through, a growing number of businesses will boycott Israel. Kerry added that the current status quo cannot be sustainable and that without longlasting Mideast peace, Israel's continued economic prosperity and security was "illusionary," according to AP.
Kerry was referring to the trend among a small but growing number of European businesses and pension funds who have dropped all investments or limit trade with Israeli firms who work in the illegal West Bank settlements.
Bennett, who hails from the right-wing, pro-settler and religious "Jewish Home" party, is a fierce critic of any form of peace talks with Palestine - and especially the Kerry-led negotiations that began after three years of stalemate in summer 2013.
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