Alone in Washington? Netanyahu
Photo: Shalom Bar Tal

Diplomats to shun PM's Washington trip

Ministry to step up protest over employment terms as negotiations hit snag

After weeks of work disruptions, Foreign Ministry workers announced Tuesday that they will step up their struggle in protest of their wages and employment terms.


The employees say no progress has been made in talks between union members and the Treasury .


The union said that its members would shun Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's upcoming visit to Washington where he will launch direct negotiations with Palestinians.


Netanyahu's previous visit to the American capital was also disrupted by the Foreign Ministry's employees, forcing Defense Minister Ehud Barak to instruct Defense Ministry delegation members in New York to assume responsibility for the logistics and preparations for the trip.


The union's members said they will also stop receiving guests at the Ministry's building, except for those visiting Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman's office and other select service providers at the complex.


In addition, the workers announced they will immediately cease all work meetings at Israel's different contingents abroad, including meetings with foreign officials, delegations visiting from Israel, and various local contacts.


The Ministry's employees have already stopped providing services to all foreign diplomats visiting or staying in Israel, on all matters of documentation and visas – even in cases that have already been processed.


The strike is also expected have a negative affect on Israeli companies, due to the union's decision to stop handling all correspondence with the World Bank and International Monetary Fund.


Workers at the Ministry said they will cut all existing work ties among the different Ministry branches, including relations between employees working in Israel and abroad.


Finally, for the time being consular services will only be provided with prior arrangement – in the consulates of New York, Los Angeles, Belarus, Mexico, Amman, Shanghai, Beijing, Budapest, Brussels, Paris, Ruanda and Pretoria.



פרסום ראשון: 08.24.10, 14:53
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