Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was faced with a potentially awkward encounter Wednesday, when a Dutch Muslim parliamentarian refused to shake his hand, indicating instead the Palestinian flag pin on his lapel.
A video of Netanyahu’s meet-and-greet with Dutch lawmakers in The Hague shows Tunahan Kuzu pointing to his pin as he puts his hand behind his back when Netanyahu approaches.
Netanyahu shrugs as both men nod in understanding. And the prime minister moves on to the next person waiting to greet him.
Kuzu, 35, was born in Istanbul and is a member of the the pro-immigrant DENK, or Think, party, which is made up of migrants to Holland.
In 2014, Kuzu led an unsuccessful parliamentary effort for the Netherlands to recognize Palestine.
Later in the day Netanyahu released a video from his plane in which he seemed to respond to the snub by Kuzu.
“Those who wrinkle their noses, let their noses stay wrinkled,” he said in a video posted to Twitter, quoting former prime minister Menachem Begin.
PM Netanyahu: Today, we saw another clear example – of those who want peace and those who don’t. pic.twitter.com/E6FClNdF7E
— PM of Israel (@IsraeliPM) September 7, 2016
“Today, we saw another prime example of those who want peace and those who don’t want peace,” he said.
Netanyahu earlier in the day told senior Dutch politicians that “in many respects” Israel’s defense of itself served to protect Europe, too.
“Israel is the most stable actor in the Middle East and the most stabilizing force in the Middle East,” he told a group of lawmakers that included Dutch Senate President Ankie Broekers-Knol, House of Representatives Speaker Khadija Arib and members of the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee.
According to a statement by the Prime Minister’s Office, House Foreign Affairs Committee Chair Angelien Eijsink told Netanyahu after the meeting the close relations between Israel and the Netherlands were based on shared values.