Wednesday, October 21, 2015

UK: Sir Eric Pickles: Foreign Office is ignoring Palestinian incitement in 'pathological' desire to be balanced

The Jewish Chronicle reports:

Sir Eric Pickles
Conservative Friends of Israel chairman Sir Eric Pickles has accused the Foreign Office of “turning a blind eye” to Palestinian incitement as violence flares in Israel.

The former cabinet minister said Palestinian society had been “harmed by a widespread culture of hate” and “glorification of terror and violence against Jews and Israel”.

Writing for the Conservative Home website, Sir Eric said David Cameron had been unequivocal in his condemnation of incitement and violence.

But he added: “Our Prime Minister’s clear message somehow seems to have become lost in translation in the bowels of the Foreign Office, which has an almost pathological desire to appear balanced whatever the cost. 

“The call for both sides to end incitement equates the acts of a handful of extremists on the very fringes of Israeli society to the state-sanctioned incitement of violence rife within Palestinian society. By doing so, the Foreign Office is turning a blind eye to what is a glaring problem for the Palestinians.”

Sir Eric said officials should condemn “each incident of incitement” and suggest Department for International Development aid should be withdrawn if the Palestinian Authority did not stop encouraging violence. 

“Make no mistake; leading Palestinian officials have inflamed the recent unrest. The British government can no longer afford to be silent,” he concluded.

Last month Sir Eric told the JC his love of Israel went back more than 30 years. He was attracted to its "free speech, independent judiciary, functioning democracy. It's a fundamental part of being a Tory."

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