The National Jewish Assembly (NJA) has raised concerns over the recent meeting on May 18 between First Minister of Scotland, Humza Yousaf, and the Palestinian Authority Head of Mission, Husam Zomlot. The NJA views this meeting as a troubling and misguided decision that undermines the pursuit of peace and fosters an environment of hostility towards the State of Israel.
Whilst the NJA does not oppose meetings with representatives of the Palestinian Authority, British Jewry expects its ministers to speak with their Palestinian counterparts about the deeply troubling issues such as the Palestinian “Martyrs Fund”, antisemitic rhetoric in Palestinian Authority school textbooks, and its complicity in inciting violence against Israelis.
The NJA believes that diplomatic engagement should be guided by the principles of fairness, objectivity, and a commitment to dialogue in the pursuit of peace. The NJA is concerned that the aforementioned pressing issues were not tabled during the meeting. This raises doubts over Yousaf’s impartiality and his willingness to engage in productive and balanced discussions on the complex Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
It is disappointing to witness a high-ranking official of the Scottish government missing an opportunity to discuss barriers to peace with representatives of the Palestinian Authority. The NJA calls upon First Minister Yousaf to reconsider his approach to engaging with representatives of the Palestinian Authority by prioritising discussions about the issues that exist within the PA and Palestinian society, which are obstacles to achieving peace with Israel.
The NJA remains committed to advocating for Israel’s right to exist in peace and security and to combating all forms of antisemitism. The NJA stands ready to engage with political leaders, community representatives, and stakeholders to promote understanding, mutual respect, and a just resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
For further inquiries, please contact Heath Sloane – NJA Press and Marketing Manager (firstname.lastname@example.org)