Sweden deals another blow to Israel in the diplomatic battle between the two countries that followed Sweden’s recognition of “Palestine.”

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman. (Photo: Yossi Zamir/Flash 90)

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman.
(Photo: Yossi Zamir/Flash 90)

Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom has indefinitely postponed a planned trip to Israel, a spokesman said Wednesday, reportedly in response to Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman’s refusal to meet with her when she came.

“The foreign minister has decided to postpone her visit to Israel and Palestine. Instead of next week it will take place later. No date is yet decided,” Margot Wallstrom’s spokesman Erik Boman told AFP.

According to Swedish media, the main purpose of the trip was to honor the memory of Raoul Wallenberg, the Swedish diplomat who saved tens of thousands of Budapest Jews from being sent to Nazi concentration camps by issuing them Swedish papers in during World War Two.

Liberman stated in December that he would boycott her visit when she came.

Israel Unhappy with Swedish ‘IKEA’ Diplomacy

Jerusalem and Stockholm have been waging a low-key diplomatic battle since Sweden became the first major European Union country to recognize the non-existing state of Palestine in October.

The Foreign Ministry summoned the Swedish ambassador to Israel for a reprimand following Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofven’s statement of recognition of “Palestine”.

Israel recalled its ambassador to Stockholm in response to Sweden’s questionable diplomatic decision, agreeing to return the ambassador only a month later.

Liberman blasted the Swedish decision after it was made, stating “Lofven must understand that neither declarations nor moves by an outside source can replace direct negotiations between the sides and bring closer a solution that would be part of a comprehensive agreement between Israel and the Arab world.”

Liberman further suggested that if Lofven is truly concerned about the Middle East, he should focus on the real problems at hand, such as the daily mass murders in Syria, Iraq, and other countries in the region.

“It is unfortunate that the Swedish government chose to adopt a declarative measure that can cause much damage and bring no benefit. The Swedish government must understand that relations in the Middle East are more complex than one of Ikea’s flat-pack pieces of furniture, and would do well to act with greater sensitivity and responsibility,” he added.

By: Aryeh Savir
Staff Writer,United with Israel