Tuesday, 25 June 2013

No Jews Please, ... We're Palestinian

The next time U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry visits Ramallah, will he
actually violate U.S. law to make sure there are no Jews among his entourage, lest he upset his Palestinian hosts?
"We will approve the meeting on condition there are no Jews."
This is what you are likely to hear these days if you request a meeting with any senior Palestinian Authority official in the West Bank.
Palestinian journalists who try to arrange meetings or interviews with Palestinian Authority representatives for Western colleagues have become used to hearing such things almost on a daily basis.
Just last week, for example, a journalist who requested a meeting between Western journalists and a top Palestinian Authority official was told "to make sure there were no Jews or Israelis" among the visitors.
The official's aide went on to explain: "We are sorry, but we do not meet with Jews or Israelis."
Another Palestinian journalist who tried to arrange an interview with a Palestinian Authority official for a European colleague was turned down "because the man's name indicates he is a Jew."
In yet another recent incident, a Palestinian Authority ministry instructed its guards to "prevent Jewish reporters" from attending an event in Ramallah.
It is not clear at this stage if the Palestinian Authority leadership is behind the boycott of Jews and Israelis who seek to meet with its representatives.
What is clear is that Palestinian Authority officials do not hesitate to state in public that they do not want to meet with any Jew or Israeli.

It now remains to be seen how Palestinians will react when and if they see their leaders in the West Bank return to the negotiating table with Israel, or meet with a Jewish Congressman or politician.
The next time U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry visits Ramallah, will he actually violate U.S. law to make sure there are no Jews among his entourage lest he upset his Palestinian hosts?

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