Minister to EU envoy: You forgot the Holocaust

Akunis cancels on event with EU ambassador over 'settlement labeling' move, slams the 'dark stain on Europe's moral fabric' in fiery letter.

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Ari Yashar,

Ofir Akunis
Ofir Akunis
Yonatan Sindel/Flash 90

Science Minister Ofir Akunis (Likud) on Thursday issued a strongly worded letter against EU Ambassador to Israel Lars Faaborg-Andersen, slamming the EU's discriminatory initiative to label Jewish products from Judea and Samaria.

In the letter, in which he canceled his participation in a joint event later on Thursday evening, Akunis wrote: "the labeling initiative is a dark stain on the moral fabric of Europe which bears witness to the fact that the lessons of history have not been learned!"

"We saw in the recent past that what began with the burning of books - continued with the burning of synagogues," he said, in a reference to the progression of the genocidal Nazi Holocaust in which six million Jews were murdered.

"What began with calls to boycott Jewish businesses - continued with the marking of human beings, and afterwards with their systematic destruction. If the countries of the Union indeed begin to enforce this policy, Europe will be sinning first and foremost against itself!"

Akunis argued that steps such as the labeling push peace away, "encourage terrorism rather than diminish it," and likewise hurt thousands of Palestinian Arab workers employed in Jewish-owned industries in the region.

"It is not yet too late to stop this foolishness, and the power to influence is in your hands," concluded the minister.

Faaborg-Andersen just this Tuesday told Arutz Sheva that he doesn't intend to negotiate with Israel regarding the labeling, claiming the move was a technical matter of European law and was not "political."

Despite his talk of rules and regulations, Dutch European Union MP Bastian (Bas) Belder warned in late September that the labeling breaches international law, in an assessment that was shared by international legal expert Professor Eugene Kontorovich of Northwestern University.

Kontorovich said that the EU was discriminating against Israel by singling it out and ignoring other disputed areas in labeling, such as the Western Sahara, which Morocco is occupying while exporting a large amount of fish products to the EU.