Sunday, October 31, 2010

Hanin Zoabi to Electronic Intifada: no chance for a two-state solution

There is now "no chance" for a two-state solution in Palestine. So said Haneen Zoabi, a Palestinian member of Israel's parliament, the Knesset, in an interview with The Electronic Intifada (EI) on 29 October in Chicago. "The reality goes more toward the one state solution," Zoabi said, "whether a democratic one-state solution, or a binational one-state solution."
Elected in 2009, Zoabi represents the National Democratic Alliance, and is the first woman to be elected on the list of an Arab party in Israel.
"We are struggling for a normal state," Zoabi explained, "which is a state for all of its citizens, [in] which the Palestinians and the Israeli Jews can have full equality. I recognize religious, cultural and national group rights for the Israelis, but inside a democratic and neutral state."

In May, Zoabi participated in the Gaza Freedom Flotilla and was aboard the Mavi Marmara when the ship was attacked by Israeli commandos in international waters. Nine activists were killed and dozens injured in the Israeli attack. Zoabi strongly criticized Israel's official inquiry into the incident. Although a member of Israel's parliament and an eyewitness, Zoabi has not been asked to testify before the inquiry -- called the Turkel Committee -- but has attended its sessions with other witnesses. She told EI of the open bias and political statements of the committee members, stating "They do not look for the facts. They are just looking for a way to justify the Israeli attack."

Asked about the prospects for the current US-brokered "peace process," Zoabi said Israeli society and parliament "doesn't feel the need for peace. They don't perceive occupation as a problem. They don't perceive the siege as a problem. They don't perceive oppressing the Palestinians as a problem, and they don't pay the price of occupation or the price of [the] siege [of Gaza]."
While Palestinians suffer intensely, Israel, Zoabi said, viewed its relationship with the Palestinians primarily as a "security problem," which it has largely resolved through the siege of Gaza, the separation wall in the West Bank, and by "security coordination" with the Palestinian Authority.

For the full interview of  Zoabi with the Electronic Intifada´s Ali Abunimah (including a video), click here.

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