Is Ireland the most hostile EU country to Israel?

By Jessica Elgot, November 17, 2011
Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign constructed “checkpoints”  in Dublin

Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign constructed “checkpoints” in Dublin

The Israeli embassy in Dublin has disputed claims that Ireland is the “most hostile country to Israel in the European Union”.

Anti-Israel activism has stepped up in the country of late. This week, Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign constructed “checkpoints” and a “separation wall” in Dublin’s main shopping district Grafton Street. Actors played the parts of cowering Palestinian women in headscarves and Israeli soldiers with machine guns.

Around 14 Irish activists were detained in Israel aboard the MV Saoirse attempting to reach Gaza by boat. They were deported back to Ireland this week.

Israeli newspaper Ynet reported that Ireland had become the most hostile country to Israel in the European Union, "pushing all of Europe's countries to a radical and uncompromising approach."

The Israeli embassy has come under attack on its Facebook page, and antoher Facebook group called on Dubliners to copy the Egyptian attack on the Israeli embassy and throw rocks at the Embassy in Dublin.

A spokesman for the Israeli Embassy in Dublin said he did not believe the country was the most hostile place in Europe for Israelis.“The problem is a very vocal, small minority. They have some sympathy in the media and parliament which exaggerates their influence. The street theatre in Grafton Street was very provocative.

"Those activists have a fixation on Israel, not on any other country, although they claim they are not antisemitic. They are trying to destroy relations between Israel and Ireland. They should not be given the recognition they do not deserve.”

“The present Irish administration has actually had a more positive relationship than the last one, the current Foreign Minister Eamon Gilmore is very fair and impartial, more so than has been the case in the past.”

Last updated: 12:47pm, November 17 2011