27 OCTOBRE 2017 – INTERNATIONAL POLICY:
In response to British Prime Minister Theresa May’s boastful remarks about the UK’s role in creating Israel, Palestine is planning to file a complaint against the UK for being behind the displacement of Palestinian people, a senior Palestinian official says.
Palestinians are planning to take legal action against the UK in British and international courts for displacing Palestinian people, Nabil Shaath, an aide to President Mahmoud Abbas, said during an interview with Lebanon’s al-Mayadeen network on Thursday.
A day earlier, May defended the Balfour Declaration, a public statement issued by the UK government during World War I, announcing London’s support for Israel’s establishment.
Signed by Arthur James Balfour, 1st Earl of Balfour, the 1917 declaration is considered a prelude to the Israeli occupation of Palestinians’ homeland in 1948.
Palestinians have repeatedly called in vain on the UK government to apologize for supporting the establishment of Israel.
“We are proud of the role that we played in the creation” of Israel, the British premier said, pledging to mark the document’s centenary “with pride” on November 2.
Warning that May’s statements could strain ties between the UK and Palestine, Shaath called on London to recognize the Palestinian state based on the 1967 borders.
President Abbas had earlier threatened the UK with a lawsuit in case it refused to call off celebratory events linked with the Balfour Declaration.
Shaath said in his interview that a series of protests were scheduled outside UK embassies across the world to call attention to London’s role in Israel’s creation.
Besides a major protest in London during the first week of November, protesters are planning to gather outside the UK’s embassy in Tel Aviv on November 7. Similar events are also planned across the West Bank as well as Gaza Strip.
UK’s Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn has announced that he would skip the celebrations.
Meanwhile, a Roderick Balfour, a great-great-nephew of Lord Arthur Balfour, told The Telegraph last weekend that Israel was in breach of his ancestor’s proclamation by failing to protect the rights of Palestinians.
“I have major reservations,” he said. “There is this sentence in the declaration, ‘Nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine.’ That’s pretty clear. Well, that’s not being adhered to. That has somehow got to be rectified.”
Palestine was under British rule when Balfour issued the policy statement.