Orange CEO received death threats over Israel boycott controversy


JERUSALEM (JTA) — Orange CEO Stephane Richard received death threats over his controversial remarks about his French telecomm doing business in Israel.

After Richard’s personal details were published online, he received about 100 calls on his phone, including several death threats, Reuters reported.

Richard filed a complaint with a Paris court over the threats last week before traveling to Israel, the French news agency AFP reported, citing unnamed sources. It was not clear whether the threats were from Israel supporters or opponents.

Richard’s visit last week to Israel came in the wake of statements he made earlier this month in Cairo that Orange, which is 25 percent owned by the French government, would end its Israeli presence if it were not contractually bound to the Israeli firm Partner. A day later Orange announced that it would seek to cancel a recently signed 10-year arrangement with Partner in Israel. The announcement led to accusations of a boycott against Israel by the company.

Richards personally apologized in a Jerusalem meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over the controversy and said Orange would never support a boycott of Israel.

Recommended from JTA