Energy and Infrastructure Minister Yuval Steinitz on Thursday visited the northern Shomron region, where he met with heads of local councils.
Steinitz also visited the Shahak Industrial Zone to strengthen local businesses following reports that Brussels Airlines intends to remove Achva Halva products from its menus because it is manufactured in Samaria.
"We are here in the industrial area of Samaria, and see all the wonderful things produced here by Israelis, Jews, Druze, Arabs, for companies around the world,” said Steinitz, adding, “Whoever boycotts halva produced in Barkan and Ariel - it's as though he's boycotting the entire State of Israel and the people of Israel. "
"For 2,000 years, the Jewish people sustained discrimination and racism. We are not willing to accept such discriminatory treatment. There are areas in the world that are controversial - and there are debates and controversies but I'm not sure that Brussels Airlines boycotts products from these areas. We reject it with disgust. We will overcome this discrimination and anti-Semitism,” he stressed.
Tourism Minister Yariv Levin sharply criticized Brussels Airlines' decision on Thursday, calling to bar the airline from Israeli airports.
During Thursday's visit by Steinitz, Shomron Regional Council head Yossi Dagan called on residents of Samaria, and on anyone who has Israeli pride, to boycott the Belgian airline altogether.
"An airline chooses to boycott a product of the State of Israel and tries to interfere in the internal affairs of the State of Israel. The Minister of Transportation would do good to cancel all the contracts it has with the State of Israel," Dagan said.
"On a day in which we are informed was the busiest day with over 80,000 passengers at Ben Gurion Airport,” continued Dagan, “there is no doubt that the people of Israel have large powers as consumers. I urge anybody who is a proud Israeli: Anyone who threatens the State of Israel and its policies should announce that he would rather not fly with Brussels Airlines.”