Netanyahu defends controversial tweet about US-Mexico wall

The premier says his tweet was not a comment on Mexican-Israeli relations.

January 31, 2017 12:15
1 minute read.

Mexico rebukes Israel over Netanyahu wall tweet

Mexico rebukes Israel over Netanyahu wall tweet


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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attempted to clarify a controversial post on Twitter in which he supported construction of a border wall between the US and Mexico.

The post quickly drew criticism from the Mexican government as well as from members of the Mexican Jewish community, some of whom say it has lead to a surge in antisemitism on social media.

"I did point out the remarkable success of Israel’s security fence," Netanyahu said. "But I did not comment about US-Mexico relations. We've had, and will continue to have, good relations with Mexico. And I believe our ties are much stronger than any passing disagreement or misunderstanding."

He added that he has had a "long, fruitful and very friendly relationship with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto and it will continue."

On Saturday night, Netanyahu wrote that "President Trump is right. I built a wall along Israel’s southern border. It stopped all illegal immigration. Great success. Great idea."

Shortly afterward, Mexico’s Secretary of Foreign Affairs Luis Videgaray wrote on Twitter that his ministry "expressed to the government of Israel, via its ambassador in Mexico, its profound astonishment, rejection and disappointment over Prime Minister Netanyahu's message on Twitter about the construction of a border wall," the statement said.

Furthermore, members of Mexico's Jewish community came out in opposition to Netanyahu's tweet with a formal statement that it “strongly rejected his [Netanyahu’s] position.”

Rabbi Shlomo Tawil, chief rabbi of the Magen David Jewish community of Mexico, told Army Radio on Monday that Netanyahu's tweet triggered a wave of online antisemitism.

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