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Sweden’s New Foreign Minister Says BDS Isn’t Anti-Semitic

[additional-authors]
October 30, 2019
Photo from Wikimedia Commons.

Swedish Foreign Minister Ann Linde, who was appointed to the position on Sept. 10, said during a session of parliament on Oct. 24 that the Swedish government doesn’t view the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement as anti-Semitic.

According to the Algemeiner, Linde told Member of the European Parliament of Sweden Lars Adaktusson that the “government does not place an equals sign between anti-Semitism and BDS.” 

When Adaktusson challenged her on the claim, Linde argued, “To advocate boycotts of Israel peacefully with a view to ending the occupation is not anti-Semitism.”

Pro-Israel activist Arsen Ostrovsky criticized Linde’s remarks on Twitter, prompting Linde to reply, “Sweden doesn’t support calls to boycott Israel. We want more cooperation with Israel, not less. Under Swedish law, freedom of expression is protected. Individuals in [the] BDS movement have [a] right to freely express their opinions. Any anti-Semitism must be condemned.”

Linde also said in an Oct. 28 television interview “that Israel’s right to exist is not debatable in any way” but “that the [Israeli] occupation which is in violation of UN resolutions, must end,” according to Ynet News.

The Simon Wiesenthal Center tweeted, “Hear no evil see no evil? @AnnLinde refuses to connect dots between #BDSers who want to end Jewish state and #antisemitism.”

The German Bundestag (parliament) and the Czech Republic’s lower house of Parliament are among those that have passed resolutions condemning the BDS movement as anti-Semitic.

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