Luxembourg’s Foreign and European Affairs Minister Jean Asselborn arrived in Israel today for an official two-day working visit to Israel.
Just last week, Cactus, the largest supermarket chain in Luxembourg, decided to stop the sale of all Israeli fruits and vegetables in its stores, until it can be proven that they do not originate in Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria.
The discordant juxtaposition of the two developments seems to have jarred no one. The minister arrived in Israel at the invitation of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, and he will also meet with President Reuven Rivlin, Deputy Prime Minister Silvan Shalom, Opposition leader MK Yitzhak Herzog, and Arab-Israeli MK Ahmed Tibi.
Last week, Luxembourg’s largest chain of supermarkets Cactus announced, after many weeks of pro-Palestinian protests outside the stores, that it was giving in. No longer will Israeli produce be sold there until suppliers prove its origin. "Guilty of growing produce in Biblical Israel until proven innocent" is the new Cactus policy, as demanded by the pro-Palestinian organization ‘’Committee for a Just Peace in the Middle East.’’
Israel's honorary consul in Luxembourg, Daniel Schneider, is trying to convince Cactus management to cancel its decision. Israeli's embassy in Belgium, which also covers Luxembourg, has been reported to be "monitoring the situation."
Two months ago, Israel was able to stop a boycott campaign for its products in three stores located in northern Sweden.
The EU is currently close to making a final decision on whether to label Israeli goods made in Judea and Samaria – a severe blow to Israeli farmers and their employees, both Jews and Arabs. Visiting Minister Asselborn employed some verbal gymnastics when he said that labeling goods produced across the Green Line was an ‘’important policy’’ but that ‘’we are not talking about an attempt to boycott Israel."