Settler addresses UK Parliament
The speaker of Israel’s Knesset – an Israeli settler living in occupied Palestinian territory – is due to address both houses of the British Parliament on Wednesday (2nd March).
The invitation to Yuli Edelstein, extended by the speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow, has been condemned by Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC).
Sara Apps, interim Director of PSC, said: “Yuri Edelstein is a settler, living in the illegal Israeli settlement of Neve Daniel, west of Bethlehem.
“The Fourth Geneva Convention explicitly forbids an occupying power from moving its civilian population into territory it occupies. The settlements themselves are recognised as illegal by the British government and the UN. And yet here is the speaker of the Israeli Parliament defying international law to live on occupied land.
“This is nothing short of incitement. Mr Edelstein is provoking the Palestinian people by choosing to live, not in the state of Israel, but on their land. And he is also showing his contempt for the Palestinian dream of a Palestinian state, and for the peace process.
“PSC condemns the invitation extended to Mr Edelstein to address the House of Commons and the House of Lords on Wednesday. It is inappropriate and unseemly for an illegal settler to be given the freedom to address the British Parliament. We hope that, even at this late stage, the invitation will be withdrawn and the meeting cancelled.”
Mr Edelstein opposed the withdrawal of Israeli settlers from Gaza in 2005, and moved to the Gedid settlement in the Strip for several months in protest at then Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon’s plans.
He is a member of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s extreme right-wing Likud party.