Middle East

‘Services Prohibited’ – Israel Cuts Spanish Consulate in Jerusalem’s Ties with West Bank Palestinians 

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez and Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz. (Design: Palestine Chronicle)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

On Wednesday, the governments of Ireland, Norway and Spain announced their formal recognition of Palestine as a state, a decision that will take effect from May 28.

Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz has decided to sever ties between the Spanish consulate in Jerusalem and Palestinians in the occupied West Bank, in response to Spain’s announcement that it would recognize a Palestinian state.

“In response to Spain’s recognition of a Palestinian state and the antisemitic call by Spain’s Deputy Prime Minister to not just recognize a Palestinian state but to ‘liberate Palestine from the river to the sea,’ I have decided to sever the connection between Spain’s representation in Israel and the Palestinians”, Katz announced on X on Friday.

He said he would also “prohibit the Spanish consulate in Jerusalem from providing services to Palestinians from the West Bank.”

“If this ignorant, hate-filled individual wants to understand what radical Islam truly seeks, she should study the 700 years of Islamic rule in Al-Andalus—today’s Spain,” Katz added.

Formal Recognition

On Wednesday, the governments of Ireland, Norway and Spain announced their formal recognition of Palestine as a state, a decision that will take effect from May 28.

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez’s announcement of the “consensus” reached “between the two parties that make up the progressive coalition government” of the decision in parliament received a standing ovation.

“After having reached a consensus between the two parties that make up the progressive coalition government, and echoing the majority feeling of the Spanish people, next Tuesday 28 May, Spain will approve in its council of ministers the recognition of the State of Palestine,” Sanchez said.

‘We Recognize the State of Palestine’ – Ireland, Norway and Spain’s Official Announcement

‘We Will Continue Pressuring’

Spanish Deputy Premier Yolanda Diaz said in a social media video on Thursday that Madrid’s recognition of the state of Palestine on May 28 is just the beginning of a political process.

“We will continue pressuring, from our position in the government, to defend human rights and put an end to the genocide of the Palestinian people,” Diaz said.

“We live in a moment where doing the minimum is, at the same time, heroic and insufficient,” she continued, adding: “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.”

The Israeli ambassador to Spain slammed Diaz’s comments, claiming that the phrase promotes hate and violence.

‘From the River to the Sea’ – Spanish Deputy Premier’s Comments Anger Israel (VIDEO)

“There is no room for antisemitic declarations in a democratic society, and it’s absolutely intolerable that they were spoken by a deputy prime minister,” Israeli Ambassador Rodica Radian-Gordon said in a post on X.

Israel has never resorted to such a measure, including when Sweden recognized Palestine in October 2014, according to the Anadolu news agency.

While the embassies in Tel Aviv specialize in providing services to Israelis, the general consulates in East Jerusalem specialize in providing services to the Palestinians and political relations.

Staggering Death Toll

Currently on trial before the International Court of Justice for genocide against Palestinians, Israel has been waging a devastating war on Gaza since October 7.

According to Gaza’s Ministry of Health, 35,709 Palestinians have been killed, and 79,990 wounded in Israel’s ongoing genocide in Gaza starting on October 7.

Moreover, at least 11,000 people are unaccounted for, presumed dead under the rubble of their homes throughout the Strip.

Palestinian and international organizations say that the majority of those killed and wounded are women and children.

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The Israeli war has resulted in an acute famine, mostly in northern Gaza, resulting in the death of many Palestinians, mostly children.

The Israeli aggression has also resulted in the forceful displacement of nearly two million people from all over the Gaza Strip, with the vast majority of the displaced forced into the densely crowded southern city of Rafah near the border with Egypt – in what has become Palestine’s largest mass exodus since the 1948 Nakba.

Israel says that 1,200 soldiers and civilians were killed during the Al-Aqsa Flood Operation on October 7. Israeli media published reports suggesting that many Israelis were killed on that day by ‘friendly fire’.

(PC, Anadolu)

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