Britain’s former ambassador to the UN and Iraq has raised concerns over the use of torture by the Western backed Palestinian Authority in the West Bank. Sir Jeremy Greenstock was interviewed by the BBC’s Kate Silverton on Sunday 24 October and spoke about a range of issues, starting with the Wikileaks documents on the war in Iraq. The former ambassador said he was now working in a private capacity with the London-based organization Forward Thinking, which is trying to help the government understand the impact of the conflict in Palestine on British Muslims. He said that his work entailed regular meetings with Hamas officials in the Gaza Strip as well as Israelis. In reply to the accusation that he is a “Hamas apologist”, Sir Jeremy explained that he was not speaking on behalf of the organization but that it was necessary to learn from other experiences; hence he had introduced members of Sinn Fein to the Hamas leadership. He noted, however, that he actually spends more time in Israel than in Gaza during the course of his work.
In July 2009, the Middle East Monitor (MEMO) published the results of a study of systematic torture by Palestinian Authority forces in the West Bank. Some of the individuals and security companies advising the Ramallah authority have also served the UK government and the Iraq Ministry of the Interior, providing “policy analysis and strategic planning for stabilization in Iraq”. Since the publication of that study, MEMO has obtained fresh evidence and testimonies of on-going physical torture being used against the Palestinian Authority’s political opponents.