Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu slammed Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallström on Thursday evening, saying her call to investigate "extrajudicial killings" of Palestinian terrorists by Israel is "outrageous, immoral and unjust."
Speaking to foreign correspondents during a New Year's reception organized by the Government Press Office (GPO), Netanyahu called Wallström's controversial comments "absurd."
On Wednesday, the deputy director of the Europe Department at the Foreign Ministry summoned Swedish Ambassador to Israel Carl Magnus over Wallström's comments.
"People are defending themselves against assailants wielding knives, who are about to stab them to death, and they shoot them, and that's extrajudicial killings?" Netanyahu asked.
"So why is San Bernardino not extrajudicial killings? And, the other day in Paris, a knife-wielding terrorist was shot to death. Is that extrajudicial killings? Does the Swedish foreign minister suggest that there be examinations of what happened in Paris or in the United States? This is definitely wrong and it singles out Israel and in an absurd way," he asserted.
"There is a natural tendency in the EU establishment to single out Israel and treat it in ways that other countries are not being dealt with, and especially other democracies," he said, adding that ties needed to be "reset" with the EU.
"I believe that Dani Dayan is an exceptionally qualified candidate," Netanyahu said. "He received praise from across the board of the Israeli spectrum - not only from the government but also from the opposition, except for the far fringes. And he remains my candidate."
He also expressed hope Israel and Brazil could strengthen their ties.
Netanyahu said talks on a new US security aid package for Israel for the coming decade, to replace the existing one signed with President George W. Bush that will expire in 2017, were "in advanced stages."
The prime minister noted that Israel's coordination with Russia over Moscow's operations in Syria "holds secure."
"I think that we both respect the fact that we have our special interests, and that we want to make sure that this coordination, or this lack of confrontation, continues," he added.
Netanyahu also addressed a controversial call by Marseille's Jewish community leader to the city's Jews to remove their kippas.
"Every Jew everywhere should be able to live safely and enjoy the protection of the authorities and I commend the government of France and other governments in Europe for taking the important stance on this issue. At the same time every Jew should know that they have a home in Israel," he said.
"As far as wearing a kippa, it's the same thing. They have a right, should have a right and enjoy the right to wear a kippa. That is a principle ... as far as the specific choice - that is an individual choice."
The Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report.