Israeli officials point to concerns that Palestinian police will leak sensitive information to terrorist groups, while the PA would turn Interpol into a “political body” driven by external considerations, as they have in other forums.
Israel is hoping to stop an attempt by the PA to join Interpol – the International Criminal Police Organization – at its 85th general assembly in Indonesia next week.
Israeli diplomats are extensively lobbying Interpol members to reject the Palestinian Authority’s bid, either by having it thrown out on a technicality or by swaying one-third of the 190 member states not to approve Palestinian membership.
On a visit to Russia on Tuesday, Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan met with the Moscow chief of police and urged the Kremlin to vote against the Palestinian bid. Erdan contended that Palestinian membership would turn Interpol into a “political body” driven by external considerations.
Speaking with The Jerusalem Post, Foreign Ministry spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon said Israel will continue to seek to block all Palestinian attempts to join international bodies.
“The Palestinians continue with their multilateral strategy, they seek recognition through international organizations instead of direct talks with Israeli. This is something Israel cannot except,” he said.
“We work with all relevant international organizations, including Interpol, in order to make sure it doesn’t happen.”
Turkey is supporting the Palestinian bid, which requires a two-thirds vote to be approved.
According to a report in Walla News, Israel is hoping to convince Russia to vote against the Palestinian bid as Kosovo, a country Russia does not recognize, is also seeking membership.
A diplomatic official, speaking to the Post, said they are also concerned that Palestinian police may leak sensitive information to terrorist groups.
Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld, said that on an operational level Israel Police have a good relationship with the Palestinian police.
“Israeli national police worked in coordination with Palestinian police in joint cooperation for years on issues such as traffic, drugs and road accidents,” Rosenfeld. He added that Palestinian membership to Interpol entailed diplomatic considerations separate from Israel Police’s relationship with the Palestinian police.
Some 190 Interpol member countries will attend the Interpol general assembly in Bali, Indonesia, from November 7-10.
Tovah Lazaroff contributed to this report.