The Foreign Ministry's management on Sunday put the kibosh on its workers committee's invitation to Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid to deliver a speech at the ministry on his vision for Israel's foreign policy and diplomatic service.
A spokesman for the ministry said the political nature of the event was against Civil Service regulations. The spokesman said that even if a coalition MK would have been invited to give a similar talk, it would have been cancelled.
The worker's committee is in a long standing labor dispute with the ministry both over workers’ conditions and the erosion of the ministry's diplomatic authority. It established a body called the Committee for Israeli Diplomacy to lobby on behalf of Israel’s foreign service, and it was that group that invited Lapid. A Yesh Atid spokeswoman said that Lapid was invited to a special discussion in the ministry called in the wake of the “continued harm to the foreign ministry and the need to fight against boycotts, terrorism, and attempts to harm Israel in the international arena.”
According to the statement, Lapid was to discuss the harm being done to Israeli diplomacy as a result of the decisions by prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is also the foreign minister, to distribute some of the ministry's functions to six other ministries.
Lapid was also to bewail the fact that the ministry does not have a full time minister.