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Newspaper La Republica
Montevideo – Monday, October 3, 2005

Diplomatic controversy

Palestinian Ambassador accuses his Israeli colleague
of “interference” in Uruguay (view)

The Palestine Ambassador in Argentina, Suhail Hani Daher Akel, has accused his colleague, the Israeli Ambassador in Uruguay, of trying to interfere in the opening of a Palestinian Embassy. According to Akel, the aim of the Israeli Ambassador consists of dissuading the Uruguayan State from accepting the announced opening of a Mission in Montevideo.

“My Israeli colleague weakens for the lack of sincerity”, Daher wrote to La Republica. On one hand, he talks about Israeli contacts with the Palestinian Government and, on the other hand, he tries to cause interference in a democratic government in order to dissuade Uruguay from the opening of the Palestinian Mission”.

In declarations to La Republica daily, the Israeli Ambassador Yoel Bernea did not show himself against the opening of a Palestinian Mission, recognizing “this situation requires the sovereign decision of the Uruguayan State”. He remembered that “the Israeli State is in contact with the Palestine Authority”, but he said that if the Representation of his neighbors was assumed by Diplomatic Representatives “with obsolete visions who continue proposing the armed struggle”, it would have a negative effect.

Next we have published a summary of the article sent by Daher Akel to La Republica:

Mr. Director

Doctor Federico Fasano Mertens

Interfering in the sovereignty of a country is not good. It is striking the prudence assumed for the possible opening of a Palestinian Diplomatic Mission in Uruguay, although my Israeli colleague weakens for the lack of sincerity. Fundamentally, when, on one hand, he talks about the Israeli contacts with the Palestinian Government and, on the other hand, he tries to cause interference in a democratic government in order to dissuade Uruguay from the opening of the Palestinian Mission.

With regard to the simple reference about the fact that a Palestine State has not been constituted yet. Well, we should analyze the reason. Israel is the occupant power according to the different UN resolutions. And as such, the UN has urged Israel to put an end to the occupation in about tens resolutions since 1967. It has not been implemented for the time being. The lack of restitution of the Palestine State is the result of that occupation. This State has also been drown with the creation of the State of Israel on Palestine in 1948, not only for occupying a larger amount of territory but also for prohibiting the Palestine State from appearing again with its own State, just as it was decided by UN resolution 181 in 1947, when it decided –without the Palestinian approbation- that Palestine was divided into two States: The Palestinian one and the Jewish one.

It is interesting to remember that the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), with a living memory, recognized the State of Israel in 1988 when it declared the Palestine State independence with its capital city East Jerusalem, only on the territories which were occupied in 1967. There is no doubt that it was a great gesture which Israel did not appreciate and turned down in spite of the Palestinian pain of seeing 78% of its Palestinian historical territory, a place where Jews, Christians and Muslims lived, remained in hands of a new State. And its hopes of possessing the remaining 22% collapsed with the occupation which took place from 1967 to these days.

(...) It is true that the opening of some of these Missions was delayed as a result of this pressure. However, over the time, Governments started accepting the opening of these Missions which now reach over 90 Palestinian Representations and Embassies all over the world. In Latin America, Uruguay is one of the few countries which do not possess a Palestinian Diplomatic Representation, although there is an excellent relationship with the current Government. We are sure that they will concede that right to us for the common interest of the Uruguayan and Palestinian people.

We believe that the existing friendly relationship with the Uruguay Republic is highly important. We are sure that the respectful presence between both parts contributes to a happy ending. Uruguay is a country which has fought for its democracy and freedom and these facts turn Uruguay into a country which loves peace and a country which has knowledge of injustices. This is maybe the best contribution a friendly country can make in order for the Palestinian and Israeli people to fight together against the violence which upsets us. Besides, this can help Palestinian and Israeli people live next to each other like friendly and neighbouring countries, without Apartheid walls and barbed wire which separate us and without horrible myths which does not benefit both countries’ interests.

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