Israelis were aghast last week after it was learned that Holland was slashing stipends by 35 percent to Holocaust survivors living in Jewish settlements.
The move is seen as a European escalation in Brussels’ continuing campaign to punish Israel for its continued settlement activity beyond the 1967 Green Line.
The head of the Center of Organizations for Holocaust Survivors, an Israeli umbrella agency representing 52 different groups that seek to promote the welfare of those who survived the Nazi slaughter of European Jewry, told Israel Radio on Monday that the new policy was misplaced.
“European government can certainly take a position as it relates to Israel’s policies in the territories, but the conclusions in this regard need to be taken up with those who make the decisions in Israel,” Colette Avital said.
“It is surprising and outrageous that the Dutch government, of all countries, chooses to impose sanctions against civilians who endured the Holocaust on its territory and who subsequently chose to move in with their children at an old age,” she said. “It is hard to accept such harassment of survivors, whose welfare needs to be sacrosanct in the eyes of the Dutch authorities.”