Israeli diplomat rebuffs anti-Semitic claim against German ambassador


Jeremy Issacharoff, the Israeli ambassador to Germany, has defended Germany's UN ambassador against accusations of anti-Semitism.

"We can have differences at times on policy issues and that does not mean that if somebody disagrees with us that he is anti-Semitic," Issacharoff told journalists. "I think people should be very cautious of attaching certain labels to people particularly the charge of being anti-Semitic."

Germany's top UN diplomat, Christoph Heusgen, came under fire on Friday following a report claiming he was responsible for one of the year's 10 worst anti-Semitic and anti-Israel incidents, in the Simon Weisenthal Center's annual ranking.

According to the Jerusalem Post's report, the Los Angeles-based organisation listed Heusgen in seventh place due to comments he made at a UN Security Council meeting on 26 March.

During his speech, he compared Hamas rocket attacks on Israel to the Jewish government's demolition of Palestinian homes. 

"We believe that international law is the best way to protect civilians and allow them to live in peace and security and without fear of Israeli bulldozers or Hamas rockets," Heusgen said at the time.

The Simon Weisenthal Center additionally cited Heusgen's UN voting record, alleging that he cast more than a dozen anti-Israel votes in 2018 and voted for nine anti-Israel resolutions this year. The organisation is due to officially present the ranking on Wednesday.

"We need to continue to discuss the issues on the substance and not attach labels that are really out of place and make this conversation more complicated," Issacharoff said.    (dpa)

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