Sunday, March 23, 2014

Global Impact: Israeli Foreign Ministry Strikes on March 23, A First in 65 Years

According to AFP, the Israeli Foreign Ministry called for a global strike on Sunday (March 24) over pay and working conditions declaring a full-scale strike at home and at diplomatic missions around the world.

"The ministry in Jerusalem will remain closed and Israel's missions abroad will not open as of Monday morning, March 24."

Israel's media said the open-ended walkout was the first by diplomats in the country's 65-year history.

Officials have said that the strike could jeopardize Pope Francis's first trip to the Holy Land, set for May 2014.

COMMENT: The Vatican said earlier this month that there were no plans to cancel the trip, but confirmed that the dispute was "likely to cause complications in preparing for the trip."

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, according to Israeli media, would be locked out of his office during the strike.

THE JERUSALEM POST came out firmly in support of the Israeli Foreign Ministry. The POST added: "The plight of our foreign service personnel has become increasingly unbearable." 

It should be noted that most Foreign Services around the globe derive local cost-of-living differentials as well as allowances for hardships they encounter while assigned abroad.