In a highly unusual diplomatic incident, a French diplomat involved in an altercation with Israeli troops in the West Bank last week will leave the country in December, Israeli media reported Friday.
An Israeli official told the Israel Hayom daily that the decision to expel Marion Fesneau-Castaing was made without harming Franco-Israeli ties.
The Israeli Foreign Ministry filed a complaint to Paris against Fesneau-Castaing, a cultural attaché at the French Consulate in Jerusalem, after she was involved in a scuffle with Israeli troops while trying to deliver aid to Palestinians.
“This was an isolated incident that does not characterize relations between the two countries,” a Foreign Ministry official said.
Fesneau-Castaing had said she was manhandled by troops, but a video of the incident also showed her pushing a soldier, after she was pulled out of the aid truck.
She and a number of other activists had been attempting to deliver tents and other equipment to Palestinian families whose homes were demolished several days earlier by court order for sitting on an IDF training ground. The IDF said the group was attempting to rebuild the demolished structures.
“If she did participate then a formal complaint will be filed because that is not the way diplomats behave,” Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Paul Hirschson said after the incident.