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Israeli Leaders Condemn Brussels Attack, Stressing Link Between Anti-Israel & Anti-Semitic Motives

Israel’s leaders from President Shimon Peres on down roundly condemned the May 24 slaying of three people outside a Jewish museum in Brussels, Belgium, including an Israeli couple and a museum volunteer.

President Peres called upon European leaders to take action against any form of anti-semitism and said, “We must act without hesitation against any form of anti-semitism. The leaders of Europe should lead the struggle against anti-semitism, which is rearing its head across the continent.”

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman was unequivocal in pointing to the underlying reason for the unprovoked attack.  He put it down to “the result of anti-Israeli and antisemitic incitement, expressed, among others, in the call to boycott Israel and Israeli products, as well as in anti-Israeli activity in international forums and the adoption of an automatic, unilateral anti-Israeli position.”

The incident was widely described as anti-Semitic by the international media and Belgian officials led the show of support for the country’s Jewish community.

Belgium’s Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo…told a news conference at the Brussels’ Prosecution’s Office: “Whatever the exact circumstances were of the shootout, there are four innocent victims who have been affected. It is a deeply symbolic place that was hit, namely the Jewish museum in Belgium.

“The Belgian government expresses all its support to the Jewish community of our country. I gave as well our support to the director of the Jewish museum in Belgium”.

Soon after the event, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued a statement on the shooting.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, this evening, strongly condemns the murder that was perpetrated at the Jewish Museum in Brussels and shares in the grief of the families of the victims. “This act of murder is the result of constant incitement against Jews and their state. Slander and lies against the State of Israel continue to be heard on European soil even as the crimes against humanity and acts of murder being perpetrated in our region are systematically ignored. Our response to this hypocrisy is to constantly state the truth, continue a relentless fight against terrorism and build up our strength,” the Prime Minister said.

In January of this year, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper delivered an address in the Knesset in which he denounced the “sickening” rhetoric against Israel that amounted to a “mutation of the old disease of anti-Semitism.” In March, Manuel Valls, then French Interior Minister, spoke at a ceremony commemorating two years since the terror attacks in Toulouse, and called anti-Semitism the “refuge of those who do not accept the State of Israel.”

[Photo: Eddy Van 3000 / Wiki Commons]