Israel joins group of world's richest countries

By Jessica Elgot, May 10, 2010
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Israeli Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz praised the OECD's decision

Israeli Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz praised the OECD's decision

The group of the world’s richest nations, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, has accepted Israel as a member.

Israeli Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz said the move was “historic”.

He added: “It gives legitimacy to Israel as an advanced and developed country.”

But Israel’s trade minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer accused the Palestinian Authority of trying to derail the bid. The PA had written to the OECD urging them to delay the vote on whether to accept Israel.

Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki said: "Accepting Israel means giving legitimacy to its policies and accepting its aggressive and racist practices against the Palestinian people."

    Last updated: 6:45pm, May 10 2010