The Mercator chain reversed its decision made 2 days ago by acknowledging it will continue to sell Israeli fruit, leaving the Slovenian Embassy to reiterate: ‘There is no Slovenian boycott of Israeli products.’
By Itamar Eichner
Two days after Slovenia’s biggest supermarket chain Mercator relented to pressure from the BDS Movement and removed Israeli products off its shelves, it went back on its decision, placing a new order for fruit from Israel, including pomelos and avocados.
The Ynet report about the decision was cited on Slovenian media, with an emphasis put on the Israeli Foreign Ministry’s accusation that this was a boycott against Israel.
At the same time, the Israeli Foreign Ministry summoned Slovenia’s ambassador for a discussion on the matter.
Israel’s Ambassador to Slovenia, Shmuel Meirom, was planning on arriving at the Slovenian Foreign Ministry to protest the move and meet with the Mercator CEO in an effort to persuade him to go back on the decision. But Mercator, it would seem, was alarmed by the outcry, and was quick to place a new order for Israeli goods.
The supermarket chain didn’t officially admit to making a decision to boycott Israel, but officials at the Foreign Ministry in Jerusalem confirmed that the chain had stopped placing orders for Israeli products even before its announcement.
This isn’t the first time the supermarket chain responds to BDS pressure to take Israeli products off the shelves – a similar incident occurred in 2014, but then, as now, the products were put back on the shelve.
The Slovenian Embassy in Israel said in response: “There is no Slovenian boycott on Israeli products. The agreements between the European Union and Israel are the basis of Israel’s special status in its relations with Slovenia as well. The government of Slovenia has not held stocks in Mercator since 2014. The ties between Israel and Slovenia have always been good and are characterized by vast cooperation, mostly in the fields of economics, science, research, advanced technologies, and tourism.”
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