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French President slams Israel minister for supporting far-right leader

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Paris | July 11, 2024 4:11:21 AM IST
French President Emmanuel Macron called out Israel's Diaspora Affairs Minister Amichai Chilkli's comments as "unacceptable" after he publicly promoted Marine Le Pen, French far-right leader of the National Rally party, before the parliamentary elections, Al Jazeera reported.

Chilkli said the leader of the National Rally party would be "excellent for Israel", Al Jazeera reported, quoting Israeli news outlets.

French President then called up Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and objected to the comments made by Amichai Chilkli, Al Jazeera reported.

"I think I and Netanyahu are of the same opinion. It's not a personal matter," Chilkli was quoted as saying, Al Jazeera reported.

Chilkli said that his support for Marine Le Pen is founded upon her stance on the International Criminal Court - where Israeli leaders face accusations of war crimes, her positions on Hamas, and "the Jewish community's fight against anti-Semitism".

Macron told Netanyahu on the phone call that he found the comments to be "unacceptable" and considered them to be an interference in the domestic matters of France.

By the end of the phone call, Netanyahu assured Macron that he would take steps to prevent further comments on the internal matters of France.

An Israeli official called Chilkli's comment a "diplomatic bomb", Al Jazeera reported, quoting Israeli newspaper Haaretz.

Le Pen and the National Rally party took a pro-Israel stance as a desperate attempt to sway the party away from accusations of anti-Semitism after her father, who was party founder once referred to Nazi gas chambers as a "detail of history".

Foreign Minister Israel Katz tweeted during the second round of voting that Israel is "not involved in the French elections and respects French democracy".

The Israel Defence Forces (IDF) on Wednesday reported that, during the night, Israel Air Force (IAF) fighter jets attacked two terrorist infrastructures of the air defence system of the terrorist organization Hezbollah in the areas of Janta in deep Lebanon and Rashit in southern Lebanon. (ANI)

 
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