Israeli-Arab MK Jamal Zahalka, speaks in Knesset. (Photo: Hadas Parush/Flash 90) Israeli-Arab MK Jamal Zahalka, speaks in Knesset. (Photo: Hadas Parush/Flash 90)
No settlers allowed in Palestinian state

No “settlers” would be allowed to reside in a Palestinian state, it was confirmed this week.

Hypocrisy is defined as the practice of claiming to have moral standards or beliefs to which one’s own behavior does not conform. Apartheid is defined as a policy or system of segregation or discrimination on grounds of race. Israel has been accused of hypocrisy and apartheid by many opponents worldwide, including the Palestinian leaders who are striving to gain a state that would include no Jewish “settlements” although they repeatedly refuse to recognize the Jewish state.

So many observers are noting what they see as hypocrisy within the Palestinian Authority (PA) and among Arab-Israeli parliamentarians in response to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s alleged suggestion that Israelis residing in Judea and Samaria should be permitted to remain in their homes – even if it means living in a Palestinian state.

Netanyahu also maintains that in order to achieve a peace agreement, the PA must agree to recognize the State of Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people.

Arab Member of Knesset Jamal Zahalka (Balad) spoke on Haifa Radio Monday morning and rejected Netanyahu’s suggested solution – explaining that Jewish “settlers” living in “Palestine” would not be loyal citizens in the new Arab state.

Last August, however, Zahalka was involved in a heated exchange between Jewish and Arab Israeli parliamentarians regarding the idea of a national referendum on possible concessions to the PA. When MK Moti Yogev (Jewish Home) asserted that “the Land of Israel belongs to the nation of Israel,” Zahalka replied:

“We were here before you. I was here before you. And we will be here after you! So stop dreaming.”

This statement was made by an Israeli lawmaker who is not Jewish yet maintains a seat to represent his Arab-Israeli constituency. This statement does not ring of loyalty to Israel. Still, Israel allows Zahalka’s membership in its government without discrimination.

“Anyone who says he wants to keep settlers in the Palestinian state is actually saying that he doesn’t want a Palestinian state,” chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat asserted.


“No settler will be allowed to stay in the Palestinian state, not even a single one, because settlements are illegal and the presence of the settlers on the occupied lands is illegal,” he added.

This seeming statement of intent to expel people from their homes came from a man who represents the Palestinian claim that Arabs living in Israel are victims of apartheid.

Former PA minister Ashraf al-Ajrami said Monday that the PA does not oppose the possibility of Jews living in a future state of “Palestine” as citizens. However, he told IDF Radio, “Israeli settlements will not be allowed to remain inside the territory of the Palestinian state.”

PA President Mahmoud Abbas had declared on several occasions that a Palestinian state will have no Israelis living there.

“We have frankly said, and always will say: If there is an independent Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital, we won’t agree to the presence of one Israeli in it,” Abbas had stated for the record.

Following a meeting in July with interim Egyptian President Adly Mansour in Cairo, Abbas said:

“In a final resolution, we would not see the presence of a single Israeli — civilian or soldier — on our lands.”

Meanwhile, Jerusalem Post reporter Khaled Abu Toameh quotes Abbas as stating on January 11:

“We won’t recognize and accept the Jewishness of Israel.”

Author: Shoshana Kesner, contributor, UWI
Date: Jan. 28, 2014