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Recent Opinions polls that were conducted in Norway and Germany showed that the majority in these two countries view Israel as a hostile entity and its settlers as extremists. According the poll in Norway, 59 per cent of the respondents described the Israelis as extremists, 55 said Israel does not want peace, 43 said they support the Palestinians, and 21 per cent were in favour of Israel. In Germany, 55 per cent of the respondents said they are convinced that the Israelis are responsible for the violence in the Middle East, 46 accused Israel of committing war crimes, 48 described Israel as an extremist state, 27 supported the Palestinians and 15 were for Israel.
Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper quoted an official source from the Israeli foreign ministry as saying that the status of the Jewish state in Europe in general is unprecedentedly disastrous and worsening. According to the newspaper, the Israeli foreign ministry sought the help of a publicity and public relations firm in an attempt to improve Israel’s image in Europe. The Israeli ministry earmarked 12 million dollars a year for its image-polishing campaign in Europe. The Israeli official source said the information received from the Israeli embassies in Europe really confirms that the vast majority of the European nations see the Palestinians as victims and Israel as an extremist and aggressive religious state.