Quarterly Updates for (16 Aug 2017 — 15 Nov 2017)

Netanyahu’s outreach efforts on the African continent suffered a setback this quarter. On 9/11, the Jerusalem Post reported that the Africa-Israel Summit, which in many ways was the culmination of Netanyahu’s diplomatic campaign, had been indefinitely postponed. The summit’s organizers expected the heads of state from more than 24 countries and representatives from approximately 150 Israeli companies to come together in Lomé, the capital of Togo, on 10/23–27. While Israeli news outlets and some Israeli officials pointed to political unrest in Togo, the postponement came amid a growing pushback on the Israeli outreach efforts. Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Mauritania, Sudan, and South Africa had announced they would be boycotting the summit in solidarity with the Palestinians.

Although the summit was a failure, the Israelis were undeterred from pursuing their broader goals. In an interview with the Times of Israel on 9/14, the dir.-gen. of Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Yuval Rotem, said that postponement actually showed that the Israeli efforts were working. “This is actually a paradox: if [our journey] wasn’t so successful, [the opposition] wouldn’t be so significant” (see JPS 46 [1] and 47 [1] for more on Israel’s outreach to Africa).