Spokesman says Merkel trip to Jerusalem not cancelled
A German spokesman said Thursday a trip this month by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and key ministers to Jerusalem to confer with Israeli leaders had not been cancelled, dpa reported
He spoke after Israeli news reports that a labour dispute by Israeli foreign ministry staff had disrupted the planning, meaning the consultations between the two cabinets would have to be deferred.
Diplomatic sources said the Israeli embassy in Berlin had already received instructions from Jerusalem to suspend the planning work.
But a Merkel spokesman said Berlin continued to assume till further notice that the January 31 meeting in Jerusalem was still on.
The consultations, which take place alternately in the two nations, are intended to encourage a closer relationship.
The deferment was reported on Wednesday by the Jerusalem Post, but not confirmed. It said a trade union representing diplomats had written to all posts abroad saying work on official visits should be suspended. The union is seeking pay rises for diplomats.