Netanyahu Opposes Russian-US Agreement on Ceasefire in South Syria


French President Emmanuel Macron told Israel's visiting Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday that Paris opposes Israel's expansion of settlements in occupied Palestinian territory as he urged fresh Middle East peace talks.

French far-right leaders, including Marine Le Pen, have long argued that the collaborationist Vichy regime did not represent the French state, but Macron dismissed those claims. In January 2017, Hollande organised an worldwide conference on the Middle East, provoking Israel's ire.

In July 1942, 13,152 Jews were arrested at the request of the Nazis and by order of the French government in power.

Fewer than 100 of those who were detained at the so-called Vel d'Hiv and then sent to the Nazi death camps survived. "I have come here to mourn with you the victims", the prime minister said.

Addressing the French president, Netanyahu said: "You spoke two days ago in the city of Nice about the Crusades and you are honest in what you said".

During the Holocaust, the values of the French Revolution - liberty, equality and fraternity - were brutally crushed "under the boot of anti-Semitism", he went on.

Some in France have criticised Mr Netanyahu's attendance.

The former Israeli ambassador to France, Elie Barnavi, also criticised Mr Netanyahu's presence.

"This story has nothing to do with Israel", he added.

Sunday was Netanyahu's first visit to France since his appearance in January 2015 at Paris's Grand Synagogue, immediately following the attack on the supermarket, when he delivered a controversial speech urging Jews to consider leaving France.

This will be the first time that Netanyahu and Macron sit down together for a meeting since the latter was elected in May.

Mr Netanyahu is in France during a five-day day trip to Europe.

Netanyahu was invited to participate in the ceremony by France's newly elected president, Emmanuel Macron.

The French leader also pledged to fight continued anti-Semitism in his country.

Stressing that global law should be "respected by all", Macron said "I am thinking here of (Israel's) continued building" in occupied Palestinian territory.

Earlier this week two Israeli policemen were killed and a third wounded by three Israeli Arabs in a gun attack.