Saeb Erekat is a PLO executive committee member, head of the higher national committee for the International Criminal Court and chief Palestinian negotiator. He’s also well-known for saying things that simply are not true.
His latest struggle with truth-telling comes in an op-ed published at the Guardian (What Palestine needs is for Europe to honor its own agreements, June 28)
In the second paragraph, Erekat writes:
Internationally, it is often forgotten that the two-state solution is built on a huge concession of Palestinian land: 78% of what was Palestine before the creation of Israel in 1948.
Israel in fact declared independence in 1948 only over the land allotted to it by the United Nations – “about 10 percent of historic [British Mandate] Palestine, or 55 percent of Palestine without TransJordan”.
Moreover, the 78% figure Erekat is citing refers to the 1949 armistice lines – the percentage of historic [British Mandate] Palestine (without TransJordan) which Israel controlled after the 1948-49 war.
But, of course Erekat’s biggest deception is his suggestion that there was an independent state of Palestine.
Though the Jews accepted the UN partition plan, the Arabs (and Palestinian Arab leaders) rejected it, and launched a war of annihilation against the nascent Jewish state. If the Arabs had accepted the partition plan, the state of Palestine would – like Israel – be 67 years old.
For Erekat to claim that accepting a two-state solution roughly along pre-1967 lines represents a concession of Palestinian land is a deception of the highest order.