NZ Indigenous coalition queries why New Zealand does not have an embassy in Israel

September 20, 2021 by Sheree Trotter
Read on for article
Indigenous Coalition for Israel is urging New Zealand to follow the example of the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Morocco and pursue a closer bi-lateral relationship with Israel.

Sheree Trotter

If these countries, as former enemies can build close ties with Israel, why can’t New Zealand? We’ve been traditional allies and share the same democratic, freedom-loving values. If the UAE and Bahrain can have ambassadors in Israel, then why shouldn’t  New Zealand?

Last week Israel, United Arab Emirates and Bahrain celebrated one year since the signing of the US-brokered Abraham Accords, which began a normalisation process that would later spread to Morocco and Sudan.
As part of the anniversary, the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs held a twelve-hour “talking peace” marathon which included six continents and more than 100 countries. NZ’s Newshub interviewed Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Lior Haiat.
Haiat explained, ‘The Abraham accords have changed the history of the Middle East, bringing in a new reality, hope to the region and stability to the Middle East. The opening up of relationships with new partners in bilateral diplomatic relations has led to a huge number of parallel accords and agreements, opening the way for tourism, trade, cooperation in technology and science and creating bridges between two nations and two peoples’.
Indeed, since the signing of the accords, Israel has opened embassies in the UAE and in Bahrain. And both UAE and Bahrain have appointed their first ambassadors to Israel. Israel and Morocco have agreed to upgrade their missions to full embassies within two months. Meanwhile, Etihad Airlines has launched flights from Abu Dhabi to Israel, while El Al airline is planning two flight routes to Morocco.
At a UN gathering in New York this week, Lana Nusseibeh, the UAE’s permanent representative to the UN stated: “For us, the United Arab Emirates, the peace with Israel has been a warm peace.” She welcomes the new investments, academic partnerships and joint research initiatives resulting from the agreement.
She added: “What we perhaps did not anticipate, and what we have been inspired to witness, is how the creativity and curiosity of our people truly united once the political elements had been removed.”
Gilad Erdan, Israel’s ambassador to the UN, stated: “Our peoples are learning each other’s languages and realizing how much the sons of Abraham truly have in common, as they share kosher meals in Manama and Marrakesh…I strongly believe that as others in the region see the fruits of our partnership and feel this transformation, they will join our circle of peace.”
When Newshub reporter, Zane Small raised the issue of the Israel-Palestinian conflict as being an impediment for the New Zealand government pursuing a closer relationship with Israel, Haiat urged New Zealand not to allow, Hamas a ‘radical Islamic fundamentalist jihadi organisation’ to dictate the terms of our relationship with Israel. ‘Hamas controls Gaza Strip and is trying to control Palestinian territory’. Indeed since Hamas violently gained control of Gaza in 2006, they have ruled with an iron rod and pursued the goal of destroying Israel. They have poured all their resources into creating a terrorist entity rather than building a prosperous state.  According to Haiat, allowing Hamas to control the Gaza Strip is in effect giving Hamas keys to the future of Palestinian people, one of ongoing violence and poverty.
New Zealand should follow the example of the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Morocco and pursue a closer bilateral relationship with Israel. Of direct benefit to New Zealand is the launch of flights from Dubai to Tel Aviv – which will reduce the travel time to Israel, but may also ease the way for New Zealand exports into Israel. As Haiat intimated, “New Zealand could be part of a triangle with Israel and the UAE, or Israel and Bahrain, that would be not just a win-win situation, but a win-win-win situation”. Returning our embassy to Israel should be the first step in restoring a once amicable relationship.
New Zealand’s foreign policy should not be determined by a genocidal terrorist organisation. We need to stand firmly on the side of those who prefer life over death, freedom over oppression, democracy over tyranny. The majority of New Zealanders support Israel and it’s time New Zealand turned from a trajectory of hostility, back to our traditional position of friendship and support.

Speak Your Mind

Comments received without a full name will not be considered
Email addresses are NEVER published! All comments are moderated. J-Wire will publish considered comments by people who provide a real name and email address. Comments that are abusive, rude, defamatory or which contain offensive language will not be published

Got something to say about this?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.