Israel demands apology after Norwegian 'swastika' pizza cartoon 'puts Israel in the same category as Nazi Germany'

The First Secretary of the Israeli Embassy in Norway said the newspaper should apologise

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The Independent Online

Israel has demanded an apology from a Norwegian newspaper, after it published a cartoon which allegedly compares the country to Nazi Germany and North Korea.

According to The Local, the cartoon was published in Dagbladet — Norway’s third most-read newspaper, and shows a woman standing in front of an organic food store, saying “Organic food, huh? But who cares if the food is produced unethically?”

In one panel, the cartoon character holds up an orange while apparently saying: “These oranges come from Israel! You are supporting murderers.”

The next panel shows the woman holding a carton, reportedly alongside the words: “This macaroni is produced in North Korea?! How did you even get a hold of these??”

The final panel shows the woman holding a pizza box, which shows the pizza arranged in a swastika shape, with the box stating “Made in Nazi Germany” along the bottom.

Dan Poraz, the First Secretary of the Israeli Embassy in Norway, wrote in the same paper that the cartoon “puts Israel in the same category as Nazi Germany and North Korea.”

“There is a fine line between freedom of speech and hate speech and this cartoon crossed that line, it’s about time that editors take responsibility. An apology may be a suitable way to start,” he wrote.

He added that portraying Israeli products as unethical can “incite anti-Israeli bias that can lead to violent reactions”.

The cartoonist who penned the drawing, Ola Lysgaard told The Local: “I’ve never experienced people missing the point to this extreme level.”

“I don’t know if the offended people read a bad translation, or just didn’t get it. Either way, I can’t help but find the whole situation utterly amusing.”