The Czech Chamber of Deputies strongly condemned all manifestations of anti-Semitism, including the anti-Israel BDS movement.
The lower house of the Czech Chamber of Deputies overwhelming passed a resolution on Tuesday strongly condemning all manifestations of anti-Semitism, including calls to boycott the Jewish state. It also called to stop financing groups that promote the boycotts.
The non-binding resolution passed with a 120-20 majority. The bill condemns “all manifestations of anti-Semitism directed against individuals, religious institutions, [and] organizations, as well as the State of Israel, including the denial of the Holocaust.”
Additionally, it rejects “any questioning of the State of Israel’s right of existence and defense” and denounces “all activities and statements by groups calling for a boycott of the State of Israel, its goods, services or citizens.”
It also calls on the government in Prague to stop funding groups that promote boycotting Israel and to intensify efforts to prevent anti-Semitism as well as to provide “greater security” to people and institutions that might be targets of anti-Semitic attacks.
The head of the Christian Democrats faction in the chamber, Jan Bartošek introduced the resolution and the Czech Foreign Ministry helped formulate the wording.
Bartošek cited “increasing waves of anti-Semitism in Europe,” including the Yom Kippur attack on a synagogue in Halle, Germany, as a catalyst for the resolution, making it “necessary to clearly define ourselves” against this trend.
Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz welcomed the “important resolution” on Twitter and noted the “true friendship” between Israel and the Czech Republic. He also called for “more Parliaments to follow suit.”
Israel’s Ambassador to the Czech Republic Daniel Meron thanked the Czech Chamber of Deputies on Twitter for passing the resolution.
The Czech Republic and Israel have a history of warm relations.
For example, in 2016, the Czech parliament condemned the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Executive Board resolution that denied the Jewish connection to Jerusalem, the Temple Mount and the Western Wall.
In 2017, it rejected a resolution by UNESCO denying Israeli sovereignty over Jerusalem and called to stop funding the organization.
Date published: 29/10/2019
Feature image: PM Netanyahu and Czech President Milos Zeman (Kobi Gideon/GPO)
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