Mark Regev, Israel’s ambassador to the UK, responds to Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas’s Guardian article, while Ella Marks and Karl Sabbagh add to the debate about the promises made in the Balfour declaration
Following the 1917 Balfour declaration, Sharif Hussein, leader of the Arab Revolt, urged the Arabs to “welcome the Jews as brethren and cooperate with them for the common welfare”. Those wise words were ignored by the Palestinian Arab leadership then, and continue to be ignored by President Mahmoud Abbas now (Britain must atone for Balfour and 100 years of suffering, Opinion, 1 November).
Rather than “negating the Arab-Palestinian right to self-determination”, President Abbas knows that Britain repeatedly put forward proposals that would have led to Palestinian independence. Even when, in 1937, Britain tabled a partition plan offering the Jews a mere 15% of the land, the Palestinian leadership refused, believing that negating my people’s right to self-determination took precedence over sovereignty for their own people.
Link : The Balfour declaration and failings in Palestinian leadership | Letters