President Rivlin with President Macron in Jerusalem

Israel President Reuven Rivlin, held a working meeting with President Emmanuel Macron of France on Wednesday. This is the ninth in the series of meetings the president is holding with participants in the World Holocaust Forum that began yesterday, Tuesday 21 January 2020.

President Rivlin received President Macron and said he deeply appreciated his participation in this historic gathering of world leaders, adding: “Our commitment to the memory of the Holocaust and the fight against antisemitism unites us. I know that you are committed to the war on antisemitism, both in word and in deed.”

Rivlin spoke to Macron about the  Palestinian application to the International Criminal Court at The Hague, saying “The State of Israel is a strong, democratic state that knows how to defend itself and how to investigate itself, when necessary, in matters of human rights and the laws of war.

“The Palestinian application to the ICC is an attempt to push the court into the field of politics, and its aim is to drag international institutions to resolve diplomatic and political issues that should be a question for negotiations between states, not criminal law proceedings,” Rivlin said.

President Macron thanked President Rivlin for his hospitality, saying “I am very happy that this is my first visit to Israel as President of the French Republic. Exactly a year ago, we were together at your state visit to Paris. It was a successful and moving visit and I would like to pay tribute to the memory of your late wife.”

Macron added, “as I promised you, Mr President, I came to Israel to represent France at the World Holocaust Forum and to mark 75 years since the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau together. I came for Israel, for what the Shoah represents and for the memory of the Holocaust, to join you in the important statement against antisemitism. We see the dark shadow of antisemitism spreading across Europe and France and this is a sign that this is a very serious disease.”

Macron also spoke about France’s efforts to combat antisemitism, saying “I will continue, committed and active, to fight against all forms of antisemitism, against racism and hatred and against those who divide our society. We decided to talk about the issue of anti-Zionism as antisemitism in a direct and clear way. Anti-Zionism is not different from antisemitism,” said Macron.