Dutch Member of Parliament Tunahan Kuzu – of Turkish descent – has refused to shake Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s hand as the latter greeted legislators on a diplomatic visit. Instead, Kuzu pointed to his palestinian flag lapel pin and placed his hands behind his back.
I guess he thought it was the Olympic Games.
Awkward does not begin to describe it.
According to the Times of Israel, Kuzu led an parliamentary effort for the Netherlands to recognize Palestine in 2014. He was unsuccessful and all he got for his efforts was this lousy lapel pin.
Dutch News reports that Kuzu was a replacement at the meeting for Rik Grashoff, an MP from left-wing green party GroenLinks who “oppose the role of Israel in the Middle East” (read: existence), and decided not to attend on principle. So Kuzu really was sloppy seconds.
An MP of the pro-immigrant DENK party, he was previously expelled from the Netherlands’ Labor Party (PvdA) after refusing to support their party’s critical remarks about a number of Turkish organizations accused of being “too focused on promoting Turkish and Islamic identity.”
Then there’s this:
One of their controversial policies includes a national ‘Racism Register’, which will reportedly catalogue Dutch citizens who do not respect immigrants.
But there are worries Denk is becoming a mouthpiece for Turkey, with Mr Ozturk publicly expressing his support for Islamist Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan – indicating a greater allegiance with Turkey and its current regime – rather than with The Netherlands.
Here’s hoping he is disciplined for this undiplomatic behavior. Since he is a fan of Erdogan, I favor the Erdogan-horse method of punishment – but I am guessing that’s not how the Dutch roll.
Update: Bibi responds.