Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Israel: Strike by Israeli Foreign Service Bears Fruit, Financial Incentives, Better Career Track

According to Reuters, Israeli diplomats on Wednesday (April 2) ended a ten-day strike that closed Israeli embassies and consulates around the world after the government agreed to improve their job conditions.

The dispute had threatened to delay a visit by Pope Francis to Israel planned for May, one of 25 trips by foreign officials affected by what first started as a work slowdown on March 5, when wage talks broke down.

COMMENT: The staff escalated the action to a full strike a few weeks later - the first such strike by the diplomatic corps since the country was established in 1948 - closing all of Israel's 102 missions abroad and paralyzing most diplomatic work with other countries and the United Nations.

"We reached an agreement that will strengthen the Foreign Service and help the country's envoys in the world to work for a long time in Israel's diplomatic corps," said Finance Ministry official Kobi Amsalem in a statement.

Israeli diplomats will receive better financial incentives, an improved career advancement track and work under a new model for foreign assignments, the statement said.