UK Lawyers for Israel (UKLFI) has reported British diplomats in Jerusalem for breaches of the Diplomatic Service Code to the Consular Directorate of UK’s Foreign Office (FCDO).
The diplomats took part in the Palestine Marathon wearing T Shirts featuring a map of “Palestine” extending from the Jordan river to the Mediterranean Sea, wiping out Israel.
The run was hosted by Jibril Rajoub, a top Fatah official with a long history of support for terrorism and for comparing Israelis with Nazis.
UKLFI is asking for the diplomats to be suitably reprimanded.
The slogan for the Palestine Marathon was “Freedom of Movement”, and it was presented as a political, anti-Israeli event.
It was launched by Rajoub, Fatah Central Committee Secretary, chairman of the Palestine Olympic Committee and head of the Palestinian Football Association (among other positions). He also handed out prizes at the end of the event.
According to the Wafa website, Rajoub made a speech at the launch saying that the event conveys the message that the Palestinian people remain steadfast in their homeland in defiance of the Israeli foreign occupation that seeks to restrict the Palestinians’ free movement and displace them.
The Wafa website also reported that the Palestine Olympic Committee, which sponsored the event, said that the marathon provides international athletes with the opportunity to “hit” Israel’s “apartheid wall”.
The British diplomats who participated in the run included the Deputy Consul General Alison McEwen. A photograph posted on twitter by the diplomats showed 7 of the 8 runners wearing the T shirt featuring the Palestine map.
They also wrote in support of the slogan for the run, tweeting: “TeamUK joined thousands of Palestinian and international runners in the incredible Palestine Marathon to support #Freedomofmovement for all Palestinians. Great energy from participating runners and an important message to highlight.”
However, Maurice Hirsch, the former Israeli prosecutor who is now the legal director of NGO Palestinian Media Watch, points out: “While supporting freedom of movement is generally innocuous, in this context, the PA FREEDOMOFMOVEMENT hashtag was conceived to specifically support the PA demand that Israel remove the security measures it has been forced to adopt in order to prevent the unimpeded flow of Palestinian terrorists from the PA-controlled areas into Israel’s large cities.”
Caroline Turner, chief executive of UKLFI said: “We believe that the diplomatic representatives who were wearing the t-shirt were in breach of the Diplomatic Service Code given that they wore a logo deleting Israel and openly supported an event run by someone with a long history of support for terrorism and who apparently detests Jews and Zionists.”
Breaches of Diplomatic Service Code
Clause 13 states: “You must not: act in a way that unjustifiably favours or discriminates against particular individuals or interests.”
Clauses 15 states: “You must not: allow your personal political views to determine any advice you give or your actions.”
For diplomats to be wearing a T shirt that obliterates the State of Israel, and to tweet their support for “freedom of movement”, which in this context means the removal of Israel’s essential security measures, and to openly support an event hosted by Jibril Rajoub, implies that they favour the political interests of the Palestinians over any Israeli interests.
The British government officially supports a “two-state solution”. In this case, the diplomatic staff appear to have allowed their actions to be determined by what may be personal political views in support of a single Palestinian “state” from the river Jordan to the Mediterranean sea.
Some of Jibril Rajoub’s previous statements:
On 18 March 2022, during his opening speech for the 2022 Palestine Marathon, Rajoub made continual references to Israel being a fascist and Nazi state . He said “The time has come to confront this fascist racist occupation. The time has come to end the expressions of ethnic cleansing, which our people is dealing with in Jerusalem and all of Palestine.,…. The international legitimacy is one, and it must be implemented against the ugly face of Nazism, which is this Zionism and this racist fascist occupation. …. the time has come for the new Nazis who are working to eliminate the Palestinian people to leave or to be confronted.”
On 5 May 2022 Rajoub stated on PA TV: “We hope that [Subhiya Younes’ death] will constitute a message that will awaken the world’s conscience, so that it will come out against the new Nazis who are committing acts of terror officially, and whose prisons are an identical copy of Auschwitz and the death camps.” Subhiya Younes had died in an Israeli prison of natural causes.
Rajoub has prohibited Palestinians from participating in sporting events with Israelis. On 15 October 2019 he wrote on his Facebook page:
“A. No Arab will participate in any sports activity in Israel. In other words, one that Israel hosts.
B. We reject that any Arab or Islamic state host any championship with the participation of Israelis.
C. Any athlete who advances a stage and an Israeli is competing against him will not meet him.”
On 8 July 2019 Rajoub stated on a Kuwaiti TV Channel: “Auschwitz is here in every city in Palestine because of [Israel’s] systematic policy with barbaric and racist living conditions and conduct in order to cause physical and mental harm to these prisoners.”
On 6 January 2016 Rajoub made a speech broadcast on Palestinian Authority (PA) official television and Fatah’s Awdah television channel, in which he said of Palestinians recently killed in the course of carrying out terrorist attacks: “you are heroes and we bless you and strengthen your families, and say to you: you are a crown on our heads, until the hour comes”
In December 2015 Rajoub was the patron of a table tennis championship named after Muhannad Halabi. Muhannad Halabi murdered two Israelis and wounded a woman and infant in Jerusalem on 3 October 2015.
On 17 August 2015 Rajoub celebrated International Youth Day at a centre named after the terrorist Salah Khalaf, who planned the attack which resulted in the killing of 11 Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics in 1972.
On 4 April 2014, Jibril Rajoub stated on official PA television: “We are living under a racist and fascist occupation. I’m telling you, if Hitler had come, he would have learned from them how to oppress humans and learned from them about concentration camps, extermination camps”.
On 17 May 2012 Jibril Rajoub said in a speech to Arab women sports journalists broadcast live on official PA television: “I say also – and on behalf of Palestine: Something that has no place in the dictionary of Palestinian sportsmen is the subject of normalization with the occupation. Impossible, impossible, impossible… I understand by normalization that the relationship between me and you will be normal, that we’ll play together and there’ll be a joint program. I say to you: under no circumstances will there be normalization. Next time we are prepared to bring the Executive Committee in helicopters … so they will see no Jews, no Satans, no Zionist sons of bitches. Come by helicopter and go back by helicopter.”
Sawt Al-Arab (Kuwaiti TV channel), Diwan’s Office, July 8, 2019
 Recording and fuller quotation (translated into English) available at http://www.palwatch.org/pages/news_archive.aspx?doc_id=17502
 Ma’an News Agency, 19 December 2015; https://www.palwatch.org/main.aspx?fi=532&doc_id=16899
 Official PA television, 17 August 2015