A wide-open strike by Israeli Foreign Ministry workers may cancel German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s planned visit to Tel Aviv, an Israeli official has announced.
Foreign Ministry’s union of employees spokesman Yaakov Livne said on Thursday that “Merkel and her Cabinet” were due to arrive in Tel Aviv later this month, but the trip might be called off, the Associated Press reported.
German officials were scheduled to arrive in Israel this week to prepare for Merkel’s visit but decided to stay home, Livne added.
The cancellation came days after Russian President Dmitry Medvedev was also forced to postpone his visit to Israel due to the strike.
The Israeli ministry workers have been demanding salary increases for several months, saying they are paid about 40 percent less than their colleagues in other ministries.
Livne said workers are negotiating with the Finance Ministry and that the small raises offered so far are inadequate.