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Palestinian Refugees

Last November, Prime Minister Ehud Barak came to London on an official visit. Some 15 community leaders were invited to his hotel to an 'around the table' briefing by Mr Barak and his numerous advisors.

Mr Barak touched on the question of Palestinian refugees by stating categorically the official view of his government that there was 50 years ago an exchange of refugees - the near million Palestinian Arabs who left Israel mainly at the instigation of the Arab governments and the near million Jewish refugees who were driven out from Arab countries by persecution and harassment. This is a fact of life that cannot be assailed. There is no question that Jews can safely return en masse to their ancient homes, and, likewise, there is no case to require that Israel should allow Palestinian Arabs to return to Israel and upset the precarious demographic balance of the country.

However, for some unknown reason, the government of Israel refuses to state this publicly, thus encouraging the Palestinians to make a strong public relations issue of their demands as well as of wanting to use Jerusalem as the Capital of Palestine which should never be entertained even if it means not coming to a final agreement with the Palestinians or with Syria.

Above - Prime Minister Ehud Barak greeting Mr Naim Dangoor who had forcibly stated the strong case of territorial and financial Jewish claims on Iraq.



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