British spokesman for the Middle East and North Africa Edwin Samuel yesterday tweeted about the suffering of Palestinians in the occupied territories, prompting controversy among Palestinians and Arabs about the UK's role in creating Israel.
Tweeting in Arabic, Edwin wrote: "I arrived in the occupied Palestinian territories yesterday. It was the first time for me to visit Bethlehem and follow up closely the preparations for the Christmas there in light of the continuous suffering the occupied Palestinians live. More about this visit is coming soon."
وصلت أمس إلى الأراضي الفلسطينية المحتلّة حيث كانت لي الفرصة لزيارة مدينة #بيت_لحم لأول مرة والإطلاع على أجواء التحضير للإحتفالات بعيد الميلاد المجيد فيها، وهذا في ظل معاناة مستمرة يعيشها الفلسطينيون تحت وطأة الإحتلال. ترقبوا المزيد عن هذه الزيارة اليوم وفي الأيام القليلة القادمة. pic.twitter.com/9i3ZYPdfTh
— Edwin Samuel (@EdwinSamuelUK) December 11, 2018
Social media users were quick to applaud his "bold" words.
Mohammad Al-Falah tweeted: "A British official recognises the Israeli occupation of Palestine. All respect and salute for you. I hope your next tweet will be an apology for the Balfour Declaration."
Adham Abu-Silmiyeh added: "The occupation was created by Britain. You have said that truth that the Palestinian suffering is continuous, but it has been so since the Balfour Declaration… Do you not see all this suffering? Does it not deserve an apology? Is Britain not ashamed of being one of the greatest supporters of this occupation?"