Israel’s ambassador to Norway called on a Norwegian daily to apologize and remove a cartoon it published Tuesday, which he criticized as anti-Semitic.
The cartoon, which appeared in the Dagbladet newspaper, portrays Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, whose body is in the form of a swastika, punching a member of Israel’s Druze minority off a bench reading “whites only.”
The image was apparently commenting on recently passed legislation defining Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people. The law has drawn the ire of the Druze and other minority groups, who say it favors the country’s Jewish character over its democracy and effectively renders them second class citizens.
Supporters of the law counter that it merely enshrines the country’s existing character, and that Israel’s democratic nature and provisions for equality are already anchored in existing legislation.
In a Twitter post, Ambassador Raphael Schutz called the cartoon “an example of the most repulsive imaginable anti-Semitic imagery.”
Today in @dagbladet, an example of the most repulsive imaginable #antisemitic imagery, with Israeli PM portrayed as a Nazi swastika punching off a Druze Israeli from a ‘whites only’ bench.
We demand dagbladet to remove this sickening image and apologize! pic.twitter.com/zy3OSuLJcu
— Raphael Schutz ???????? (@RafiSchutz) August 7, 2018
The cartoon still appeared on Dagbladet’s website on Tuesday evening and there was no indication the paper indented to apologize.
Dagbladet has previously pushed back against claims of anti-Semitism over its cartoons, which have equated circumcision to pedophilia, likened Israel to Nazi Germany and North Korea, and portrayed figures widely perceived as Jewish maiming a child as they profess their faith.