Pro-Palestine activist destroys portrait of Lord Balfour in Cambridge

A video posted on social media shows a women spray painting and slashing the artwork


A pro-Palestinian activist has videoed themselves destroying an historic work of art, depicting Lord Arthur Balfour in Trinity College Cambridge. 

In a video posted to social media, an unnamed female activist can be seen spraying red paint onto the work before taking out a box cutter and slashing it and pulling apart the canvas. 

The Palestine Action group claimed credit for the protest on social media, saying that the Balfour declaration ‘began the ethnic cleansing of Palestine.”

The painting of Balfour was created by Philip de László, the son of Jewish parents from Hungary, who was known for his portraits and royals and official figures.

Written in 1917, by then foreign secretary Arthur Balfour, the declaration is taken from a letter he wrote to Lord Rothschild. 

The full text of the letter, which reads: “His Majesty's Government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country.”

The letter was seen as official British recognition of the Zionist movement and is credited with galvanising the cause of Jewish statehood across the world. 

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