Israeli ambassadors in Europe were asked to work on Shabbat - and refused

Israeli ambassadors refuse orders to meet their countries' foreign ministers on Shabbat to discuss peace plan.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

European Union
European Union

Israeli ambassadors in Europe refused an urgent order from the Foreign Ministry ahead of meetings with European foreign ministers on the subject of delaying the implementation of US President Donald Trump's "deal of the century."

The reason for their refusal was cited as the meeting behind held on Shabbat (the Sabbath), and the fact that diplomatic emissaries would have their pay cut by one-third.

Yediot Aharonot's Itamar Eichner reported that over Shabbat, the ambassadors received an urgent message demanding that they arrive immediately at their respective foreign ministers' offices and speak out in favor of Israel at the upcoming monthly meeting, which will be held on Monday.

The Foreign Ministry also asked the ambassadors to update Jerusalem regarding their activities in the matter, but the Diplomatic Workers' Committee rejected the request, citing as its reasons that this was not a life-and-death issue which would require the ambassadors to work on Shabbat, and that the government decided this week to cut the emissaries' salaries by a third.

The Committee's chairwoman, Dana Benbenishti, responded: "The Foreign Ministry is not an organization of volunteers. The dedicated diplomats who work for it are willing to work ceaselessly, but in exchange for respectful treatment and appropriate salaries. The Israeli government is responsible for the situation which the Foreign Ministry and its employees find themselves in. During these days, when there are many concrete international challenges, the State cannot make peace with a situation in which it continues to destroy its foreign services."