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Newspaper Pagina / 12
Buenos Aires, Tuesday, August 22 of 2000

Cohabitation of two flags (view)

It is necessary the existence of a Palestinian State to achieve peace in Middle East”. This was the conclusion of an act which took place at the Palestinian Embassy in Buenos Aires.

In Middle East, a peace between Palestinians and Israelis is very far away. Nearer, in our country, the Movimiento Judio por los Derechos Humanos (Jewish Movement for Human Rights) organised before yesterday an act which counted with the presence of over 300 people. Its objective was bring stances closer, as well as, agree that peace between both people must be even closer, no matter how difficult it may seem. The act took place at the representation of the Palestine National Authority in Buenos Aires –which was surrounded by about tenths policemen- and it counted with the presence of Palestinian authorities, leaders from human rights movements, journalists such as Herman Schiller and Horacio Verbitsky and experts on international issues such as professor Norberto Mendez. “We are moved by the presence of the Israeli flag in this embassy and we regret the absence of its representatives”, the Palestinian ambassador Suhail Akel concluded.

Effectively, at the act there were great absences from the Jewish side. Though a 80% of the public was Jewish, the vice-president of DAIA (Delegacion de Asociaciones Israelitas Argentinas – Israeli Argentine Associations Delegation), Jorge Kirszenbaum, did not take part in the act in spite of the fact that he was mentioned on the list of speakers. Kirszenbaum himself later explained that at the last moment he decided not to attend the act as a result of “the pressure” exerted by Yithzak Aviran, the present ambassador of Israel in the country. Supposedly, Aviran had finished his mission in the country, but he had not been replaced yet. So only Schiller and Rabbi Daniel Goldman represented the Jewish side.

The act also counted with the presence of Hebe de Bonafini, president of Madres de Plaza de Mayo (Mothers of May Square); Nora Cortiñas, president of Madres de Plaza de Mayo-Linea Fundadora (Mothers of May Square-Founder line); colonel Horacio Ballester, from Centro de Militares Democraticos – Cemida (Centre of Democratic Soldiers); Alfredo Bauer, a writer and anti-nazi activist; and Tita Sacolsky, from Memoria Activa organisation (Active Memory organisation).

All speakers affirmed that peace in Middle East is only going to be achieved by means of an urgent creation of a Palestinian State. Professor Norberto Mendez explained the many problems of the Arab Israeli conflict and he expressed himself in favour of the creation of the Palestine State. “Peace is only going to be fair if both people are on an equal footing”, he emphasised. With regard to this, Horacio Verbitsky criticised what he labelled as “the reactionary and anti-Palestinian policy of the several Israeli governments which seemed not to realise that other people historically lived in that desert”. Then he emphasised that “I am a Jew who has always backed up the Palestinian people’s liberation cause. Now I support these efforts for peace”.

State: All speakers affirmed that peace in Middle East can only be achieved by means of an urgent creation of a Palestine State.

Herman Schiller summed up his stance saying that “Jewish fundamentalists accuse us of abandoning our duties before the Palestinian terrorism. Palestinian fundamentalists accuse this embassy of abandoning its duties before Zionism. It is not even necessary the reactionary clumsiness of these accusations. In this issue, there are not two devils, but only one: the devil of bellicose countries, the vampires which are greedy for shedding the blood of other people, not their own”.

Within the unanimity about the necessity of a Palestine State, the matter of the final status of Jerusalem was hardly mentioned. Being recognised by Israelis and Palestinians as the most difficult dispute in negotiations, this issue was approached by Suhail Akel, who emphasised the necessity for Eastern sector remaining under the Palestinian sovereignty.

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