Simar Gabriel, the German Foreign Minister who has suggested that Israel is pursuing an apartheid policy and to whom Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu refused to meet last April for his insistence on meeting with representatives of Breaking the Silence, will meet with Netanyahu at the end of the month in Jerusalem.
Gabriel will be in the country for a brief visit on January 31 as a keynote speaker at the annual conference of the National Security Studies Institute in Tel Aviv. Diplomatic sources said that Germany requested the meeting with Netanyahu, and that the details were resolved by the two foreign ministries.
Last month, at a meeting to combat anti-Semitism in Berlin with Muslim immigrants, protesters burned Israeli flags in response to US President Donald Trump's decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, Gabriel, speaking of criticizing Israel, he said that a visit to Hebron in 2012 reminded him of "what was seen during apartheid."
And last April, Gabriel unleashed a diplomatic incident by insisting on meeting with representatives of the far-left NGO Breaking the Silence, although it became clear to him that if the meeting was taking place, his planned meeting with Netanyahu It would be canceled. And, in fact, the two did not meet, and Gabriel refused to receive a phone call from the prime minister.
The exchange with Gabriel contrasted sharply with the way Netanyahu was received last week in India, and told the cabinet at the beginning of the weekly cabinet meeting that his visit to India "will be remembered for a long time."
Noting the "strong and warm reception" he received, Netanyahu said the trip contributed and will continue to contribute to Israel in the areas of economy, security, technology and diplomacy.
The two most touching moments of the trip, said Netanyahu, was his visit to the Chabad House in Mumbai with 11-year-old Moshe Holtzberg, who, as a young child, was saved by his Indian babysitter Sandra Samuel during the attack terrorist there a decade ago.
He also said that he had moved to his meeting in Mumbai with representatives of the small Jewish Indian community. "Their contribution is disproportionate to their numbers," he said, noting that the vast majority of the Indian Jewish community migrated to Israel.
Netanyahu said that some of those who attended the meeting "cried with joy", not because there had been any anti-Semitism in India, there has never been any, he said, but because they longed for a meeting of "cultures, nations and peoples" during years, and now it was taking place before his eyes.
Netanyahu said he will travel later this week to Davos to participate in the annual economic forum there.
"Israel is a global technological power," he said. "We are cultivating this true strength and we are promoting it in many forums," he said.
"This forum is the main global economic forum, I will meet there with a long list of heads of state, and of large corporations, [who] are no less important today."