Palestinian envoy to UK gives nod to Israel as 'Jewish state'


The Palestinian envoy to Britain has said Israel must be recognised as a Jewish state if there is to be real lasting peace between the two nations.

Manuel Hassassian said: "Both sides need to make painful concessions andreach a compromise. Israel shall recognise the state of Palestine. Palestine shall recognize the Jewish state of Israel."

His comments appeared in an article published by the academic journal Fathom alongside those of Israeli professor Raphael Cohen-Almagor.

Mr Hassassian has served as the Palestinian Authority's chief representative to Britain since 2005, but his remarks directly contradict the official position of President Mahmoud Abbas.

In March this year, Mr Abbas said there was "no way" he would recognise Israel as a Jewish state.

On the issue of territorial concessions, both Mr Hassassian and Prof Cohen-Almagor agreed that Israel should be able to annex a number of major settlement blocs within the West Bank including Maaleh Adumim, Givat Zeev, Gush Etzion, Modiin Illit and Ariel.

But Mr Hassassian said that Israel must be prepared to withdraw from the other settlements beyond the 1967 green line.

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