ADL: British Vote to Recognize Palestine “Counterproductive”

New York, NY, October 14, 2014 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) called the non-binding resolution passed yesterday by the British Parliament to recognize a Palestinian state a “premature and counterproductive political maneuver” likely to contribute to further delaying the two-state solution its supporters claim they want to see.

With less than a majority of the members of parliament actually participating in the vote, the British House of Commons voted 274-12 (out of 650 members) in favor of the resolution, which stated:  “That this House believes that the government should recognise the state of Palestine alongside the state of Israel as a contribution to securing a negotiated two-state solution.”

Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, issued the following statement:

This non-binding vote by the British Parliament is premature, unhelpful, and does nothing to further Israeli-Palestinian reconciliation.

The government of Israel and the vast majority of Israelis favor a mutually negotiated two-state solution and, in the interest of peace, are prepared to make hard decisions on borders, settlements and other deeply complex and emotional issues. However, following decades of support for terrorism, the rise of extremist movements and sabotaged negotiations, Israelis have deep skepticism that the Palestinians are prepared to make equally hard decisions on issues such as borders and refugees and have the same commitment to reconciliation. 

The proponents of the House of Commons resolution and those members of parliament who voted in favor of recognizing a Palestinian state now have sent a message to the Palestinians that they can circumvent negotiations, shelve difficult concessions and ignore Israel altogether.  Such a message undermines the chances for Israeli-Palestinian cooperation and a lasting reconciliation.

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