Ambassador Husam Zomlot, head of the Palestinian Mission to the UK, has asked for urgent clarification from the Scottish National Party and Scottish Government after an amendment last week to a Scottish parliamentary motion described the Palestinian Nakba as “self-inflicted.”
The 1948 Nakba, or “catastrophe”, saw more than half of all Palestinians dispossessed and uprooted from their land and homes and wind up as refugees in order to make way for the creation of Israel.
The amendment in Holyrood, tabled by the SNP’s Richard Lyle, however, described this gross and never-redressed injustice as a “self-inflicted tragedy.”
Said Ambassador Zomlot: “This is a patently absurd revision of history. The Palestinian displacement of 1947-49 was a deliberate act that had been meticulously planned by a Zionist leadership intent on carving out a Jewish-only state in the territory.”
“To suggest that the forced displacement of hundreds of thousands of civilians is somehow their own fault is an outrageous insult, not only to Palestinians, but to refugees fleeing violence, persecution and war and victims of ethnic cleansing everywhere and at all times.”
Mr Zomlot went on to argue that without a proper understanding of the root causes of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict hopes of resolution would be futile.
“Without such understanding, addressing all legitimate grievances and thus achieving a just and lasting peace between Palestinians and Israelis will be impossible.”
“Mr Lyle has insulted an entire nation. Furthermore, the language Mr Lyle uses fosters a culture of victim blaming which is not only unacceptable but sets a precedence.”