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HarperCollins wipes Israel off the map

Harper Collins markets atlas identifying Gaza and West Bank to students in Arab countries; accused of distributing tool to 'delegitimize' the state.

Harper Collins, one of the largest publishers in the world, has marketed English-language atlases that fail to include Israel to schools in the Middle East.



Unlike absent Israel, the volume includes a map identifying Gaza and the West Bank. Collins Bartholomew, the map company in charge of printing, said including Israel was "unacceptable" for customs in the Persian Gulf.


On Thursday, a company spokesperson said HarperCollins "regrets" the ommission and has ended sale of the Collins Middle East Atlas. All remaining copies of the offending map collection will be destroyed, the statement said.


"HarperCollins regrets the omission of the name Israel from their Collins Middle East Atlas. This product has now been removed from sale in all territories and all remaining stock will be pulped. HarperCollins sincerely apologizes for this omission and for any offence caused," the publishing house, owned by media mogul Rupert Murdoch, said in a statement. 


The relevant map in the Harper Collins atlas
The relevant map in the Harper Collins atlas


Dr. Jane Clements, director of the UK's Council of Christians and Jews, said the "maps could be a powerful tool for delegitimizing and could cause more confusion and less clarity.


"We need to be restless in urging the relevant bodies to ensure that all atlases anywhere reflect the official UN position on nations, boundaries and all political features," she added.


“The publication of this atlas will confirm Israel’s belief that there exists hostility towards their country from parts of the Arab world," said the chairman of the Department of International Affairs Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales in The Tablet. "It will not help to build up a spirit of trust leading to peaceful co-existence,” .




Correction: This article incorrectly referred to HarperCollins as a British publishing house. HarperCollins is headquartered in New York City.



פרסום ראשון: 01.01.15, 22:14
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