The Foreign Ministry is planning to remove photographs of all Israeli diplomats from the internet sites of the Israeli embassies around the world, following a new threat by al-Qeada.
The Islamic terror organization published images of three Israeli diplomats in a "black list" of foreign diplomats presented as enemies which should be struck. The pictures were taken from an internet site of one of the Israeli embassies in a country in the Mediterranean basin, and posted on an al-Qaeda site next to British, American, and Australian diplomats, under the title: "Our enemies."
Names of the Israeli diplomats appeared underneath their pictures, and a call was placed under the images to strike Western diplomats.
Some can't move an inch without a bodyguard
Following the discovery the Foreign Ministry decided to immediately change its policy of publishing the photos of Israeli diplomats. Almost all embassies show pictures of the ambassador and his staff. A senior source in the Foreign Ministry said in response: "The posting of pictures of Israeli diplomats is very worrying. It's clear to us that al-Qaeda members took the pictures from the internet site of the Israeli embassy. This obligates us to not make it easy for them, and if all the photos have to be removed – then that is exactly what we will do."
Following the publication of the pictures, an increase of security around Israeli representatives serving in embassies in the Mediterranean basin have been stepped up. Israeli representatives and diplomats abroad have always been a sought after target for terrorist attacks. Israeli embassies are among the most secured in the world – in second place after the United States.
In some countries the embassies resemble a fortress. Many limitations on freedom of movement are placed on Israeli diplomats, and some cannot move an inch without a bodyguard nearby. Others do not leave their home without being driven in an armored vehicle. Security arrangements in Israeli embassies in Middle Eastern and Muslim countries are especially stringent.