JERUSALEM—-Israeli president Reuven Rivlin thanked the Norwegian Government for its work to combat anti-Semitism, during a meeting Sunday in Jerusalem with Norwegian Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide.
He said, “In the last few years there has been a significant improvement, a testament to the ability to overcome hatred and to educate understanding. We still have a long and important way to go, and we must continue down this path in order to combat this terrible phenomenon.”
The President also expressed his thanks to the Norwegian government for its stand against boycotts and the BDS movement.
“I believe that BDS leads to increasing hatred, and does not work against it, and it symbolizes all that stands in the way of dialogue, debate, and progress. It is against all our cooperation, and against our lives together here. You must work against it no less than we, because it is stands in the way of progress,” he said.
During the meetingn the Israeli president also stressed that Jerusalem is Israel’s capital, and termed UNESCO’s negation of Israel’s deep-rooted ties to Jerusalem as “nonsense” and “a waste of time.”
He said that UNESCO, through its declaration, is trying to rewrite history, and that anyone who reads the Bible knows that King David proclaimed Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. “Jews prayed for 2000 years to return to Jerusalem,” he said.
Rivlin also implied that by negating the Jewish connection to Jerusalem, UNESCO was also negating the Christian connection. “Every Christian who comes to Jerusalem, feels a connection when walking through the Via Dolorosa,” he said. “UNESCO raising a finger to change history is not helpful.”
During her visit, the Norwegian Foreign Minister also met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who urged her to get her country to stop funding BDS-supporting NGOs.