Environment minister may miss climate change conference because of security dispute
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Environment minister may miss climate change conference because of security dispute

Qatar refuses to let Gilad Erdan attend UN gathering with Israeli security detail, Shin Bet won't let him go without

Aaron Kalman is a former writer and breaking news editor for the Times of Israel

Home Front Defense Minister Gilad Erdan (photo credit: Gideon Markowicz/Flash90/File)
Home Front Defense Minister Gilad Erdan (photo credit: Gideon Markowicz/Flash90/File)

Environmental Protection Minister Gilad Erdan may miss the UN’s climate change conference in Doha, Qatar, in November for security reasons.

The host country refused to let Israel organize its minister’s own security detail, and the Shin Bet unit assigned to protecting Israeli officials abroad said it would not allow the minister to travel under such circumstances, Israel Hayom reported on Tuesday.

Erdan wanted to attend the conference, which he called one of the UN’s most important annual gatherings. In an interview with Israel Radio the minister said the resolutions passed at the gathering would bind Israel, adding that the conference “was an opportunity for Israel to show the world its contribution toward reducing greenhouse gasses.”

In a response to the Hebrew daily, the Prime Minister’s Office said a final decision had not been made, and alternative security options were being evaluated.

The last time an Israeli official visited a Gulf state was two and a half years ago, when Uzi Landau traveled to the United Arab Emirates in January 2010. No Israeli officials have traveled to the Gulf since Emirate officials blamed Israel for the killing of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh in Dubai that month.

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