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Thu Dec 13, 2012, 03:19 AM

Uruguay hints Israeli ambassador should be replaced

Uruguay hints Israeli ambassador should be replaced

Ambassador Dori Goren called senior MPP officials' remarks that Israel is committing genocide 'repugnant and shocking', angering members of the Uruguayan government.

By Barak Ravid | Dec.10, 2012 | 5:30 PM | 22

A diplomatic incident has recently clouded Israel’s relations with Uruguay, leaving its government is angry at Israeli Ambassador Dori Goren's public criticism of a string of Uruguayan politicians and parties. In recent days, Uruguay has even begun sending hints to Israel that it would like to have the ambassador replaced.

The signals from Montevideo were sent to Jerusalem via the media in Uruguay. “The government would consider replacing the ambassador a gesture of goodwill on Israel’s part,” a senior official was quoted as saying in a report published last week in the weekly newspaper Busqueda, which is identified with the left. “This stems from diplomatic disputes between the ambassador and members of the government and the political system.”

The origins of the dispute can be found in the declarations made by senior Movement of Popular Participation party officials condemning Israel during last month’s fighting between Israel and Gaza. Uruguayan President Jose “Pepe” Mujica formerly headed the MPP, a left-wing party that formed the slate that won the election in Uruguay.

Several senior MPP members said during the course of Operation Pillar of Defense that Israel is committing “genocide” and conducting a “policy of extermination” in Gaza. The Israeli ambassador hastened to react to the statements, calling them “repugnant and shocking.” Goren said the words are particularly grave coming from the party of Foreign Minister Luis Almagro.


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