Uri Geller: 'Why I started my own country'

The Israeli-British illusionist has established a microstate on a Scottish island - and wants the public to join him


The Israeli-British illusionist, Uri Geller, has established a microstate on a Scottish island - and he wants the public to join him.

The 75-year-old, famed for his televised magic tricks and controversial claims to psychic powers, purchased Lamb Island off the North Berwick back in 2009.

"I always wanted to own an island, be like James Bond," Geller told Raffi Berg for BBC News from his home in Old Jaffa, Israel.

He is now offering citizenship of the Island for just $1, and has said all profits will be donated to Save a Child's Heart (SACH), an Israel-based charity that cares for children around the world with heart conditions.

"Lamb is a place like no other, and it deserves its own identity. This is a fitting way to do it."

Geller has described Lamb as "possibly the most mystical island in the world," owing to its claim to sit astride "leylines" that connect it to the legendary King Arthur's rumoured burial site on the Isle of May and the Hill of Tara's fabled portal to a pagan Otherworld where medieval Irish kings were once crowned.

Citizenship of the island, which is currently uninhabited by humans, will be a “symbolic status”.

The island’s constitution, published to its website, declares a “special friendship towards witches,” given that many suspected of witchcraft were put through the ordeal of trials following such accusations in nearby Berwick in the late sixteenth century.

The document, which also codifies the island’s “special friendship towards peaceful extraterrestrials” says it offers “eternal sanctuary” for the souls of those who were subject to witchcraft trials.

The island’s flag, based on Geller’s “LIFE” logo created with the aid of Catalan artist Salvador Dali in the 1970s, is rich with Jewish and Israeli symbolism.

The pyramid at its centre symbolises the biblical exodus of the Jewish people from Egypt in the thirteenth century BCE.

Scottish writer Jeff Nisbet has described Lamb island as having “inexplicable similarities” with Egypt’s 4,500 year-old pyramids at Giza, argue that its two neighbouring islands mirror the ancient complex.

On the newly founded microstate's site, Geller noted the extravagant claim by fifteenth century chronicler Walter Bower that the Scots themselves are decenced from Princess Scota, an exiled daughter of the pharaoh whose enslavement of the Israelites is described by the Book of Exodus.

Local skipper Dougie Ferguson told BBC News that while he "knew all the past owners” of Lamb, he had “never previously heard of the connection” to Giza.

However he stressed that “these are important wildlife areas, and if it brings people to see, then that can only be good."

The flag also displays alef (א). This is the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet and the first letter of Geller’s forename.

The Hebrew letters hey (ה) and shin (ש), that stand for the Name of God, also feature.

A small symbol of a fish is also included to represent fertility and children, along with Geller’s home town of Old Jaffa.

SACH thanked Geller for his “continued amazing support and dedication” in a statement posted to Facebook. The magician is also a goodwill ambassador for the charity.

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