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By Gabrielle Okun
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and French President Emmanuel Macron discussed the dangers of political Islam while commemorating the 75th anniversary of the expulsion of French Jews during World War II in Paris Sunday.
Netanyahu addressed Israeli-Palestinian relations, saying that political Islam is an obstacle to peace in that region and is spreading to Europe.
“Political Islam seeks to destroy both Israel and European countries,” he said in his statement. “We have heard extremist voices that not only call for the destruction of the Jewish state, but the Jews themselves and everyone who objects to and opposes their way.” He also added that the refusal of Palestinians to recognize the state of Israel will not allow a peace agreement to be made.
The Israeli prime minister continued his criticism, stating that radical Islam seeks to not only destroy Israel, but also France and the West.
“The radical Islam that Iran and ISIS represent seeks to destroy us and destroy Europe. Israel is their first goal. They do not hate the West because of Israel, but they hate Israel because of the West. They are trying to destroy us and you, and since France is a great power they will not ignore it,” warned Netanyahu.
Macron commented on anti-Semitism stating that “anti-Zionism” is the new form of anti-Semitism in Europe. He also stressed that France must acknowledge their responsibility in the Holocaust. His statement sharply contrasts that of his former presidential opponent Marine Le Pen, leader of the National Front party who stated that France did not bear accountability in the Holocaust.
“I think that in general, more generally, if there were those responsible, it was those who were in power at the time. This is not France,” she said. She claimed she wanted the French to be “proud to be French again” over remembering past injustices.
The French parliament voted on July 6 to extend the country’s “state of emergency” until Nov. 1, 2017, allowing heightened security measures to continue in highly-populated areas.