The leaders of one of Norway’s coalition parties called Sunday on the Foreign Ministry in Oslo to recall the country’s ambassador to Israel in protest of the IDF’s “Summer Rains” operation in Gaza.
A spokesman for the radical Socialist Left (SV) party, Bjorn Jacobsen, said during an interview with a state-run television station that the ambassador to Israel should be recalled as long as Israel is operating in Gaza. In another interview with a local news website, Jacobsen said “the operation in Gaza is hurting the Palestinians.”
“Israel is using violence and pressure against the Palestinians – a country cannot act in this manner,” he said, adding that recalling the ambassador to Oslo would exert international pressure on Israel to halt its Gaza offensive.
Ruling party Labor rejected the demand, with party officials saying other means should be applied to assist the Palestinians without hindering Israel-Norway relations.
Last January Norway’s Finance Minister Kristin Halvorsen’s of the SV party called on the country to boycott Israeli products. Israel rushed to ask for clarifications over the remarks, with then-Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom contacting his Norwegian counterpart Jonas Gahr Stoere, of Labor.
Stoere immediately responded that a government-backed boycott of Israel "would be unthinkable."
"It is not in the government platform," he said. "It is not Labor's policy. It is not the Center Party's policy. It will not become the government's policy."