Photo: Hassan Shaalan
MK Ahmad Tibi
Photo: Hassan Shaalan

MK Tibi in London to lobby for Palestinian statehood

Ahead of tense symbolic vote in British parliament on recognition of Palestine as state, Arab-Israeli legislator rallies support among MPs.

Israeli parliamentarian Ahmad Tibi arrived in London to meet with British officials and MPs to lobby them ahead of a symbolic vote on recognition of a Palestinian state that the British parliament is scheduled to hold Monday.



Tibi will attend the proceedings on the non-binding motion put forth by the Labour party. The Israeli MK told Labour officials that their support of a Palestinian state was a moral act that would promote the peace process.


"The negotiations in its previous iterations have been exhausted and the Netanyahu government is doing everything in its power to thwart the two-state vision, primarily using the settlements," he said.


MK Ahmad Tibi (Photo: Hassan Shaalan)
MK Ahmad Tibi (Photo: Hassan Shaalan)


Tibi added: "I do not know how the vote will swing, but this is an important political event which could serve as a catalyst for other countries and parliaments in Europe and the world."


The Arab parliamentarian objected to the Israeli Labor party's appeal to their British Labour colleagues to not support the motion. "It was an immoral and embarrassing move by the party which initiative the settlement enterprise, which is the most one-sided move possible."


He added: "This request by Labor places it as a subcontractor for Minister Avigdor Lieberman's foreign ministry. Anyone who supports two-states in principle must support the Palestinian move, which is a diplomatic overture using the UN – otherwise it perpetuates the occupation and the injustice."


Cameron and Abbas (Photo: Reuters)
Cameron and Abbas (Photo: Reuters)


The motion due for debate in Britain's lower house of parliament, put forward by a lawmaker from the opposition Labour party, will ask parliamentarians whether they believe the government should recognize the state of Palestine.


It has the backing of the left-leaning Labour party's leadership which has told its lawmakers to vote in favor of the motion, an edict which has caused anger with some pro-Israel members of parliament set to rebel or stay away altogether.


According to the British media, some of the party's shadow ministers are outraged at being told by leader Ed Miliband how to vote on the issue, as they support recognition through as part of a peace agreement. They are reportedly considering a boycott on Monday should their lobbying to allow a free vote prove to be unsuccessful.


British newspaper the Independent quoted a senior pro-Israel MP as saying that, "To say that there is a row going on it putting it very mildly. People are furious. This is an attempt to rip up 13 years of carefully calibrated policy. It total madness and makes the prospect of peace less rather than more likely.”


פרסום ראשון: 10.13.14, 13:47
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