PLO envoy: Palestinian state should be Jew-free

A Palestinian official has called for a Palestinian state without any Jewish residents.

Maen Areikat, who served as the Palestinian Liberation Organisation's envoy to the United States, said "it would be in the best interest of the two people to be separated" in any future state.

The comments, reported in USA Today newspaper and made during a meeting sponsored by the Christian Science Monitor, were criticised by a former member of the US National Security Council.

Elliott Abrams pointed out that no state had officially prohibited Jews since Nazi Germany attempted to become "judenrein" (free of Jews).

Israel has a majority of Jewish citizens, but is still home to a number of minorities including Muslims, Christians and Baha'is.

Last updated: 2:17pm, September 14 2011