Yasser Arafat hinted at recognition of Israel as a Jewish state, according to a transcription of an interview with Henry Siegman, which this article describes as an “American Jewish activist”:
Israel would receive sovereignty over the Western Wall — a remnant of the Second Temple compound — and the Jewish Quarter of the Old City, “because we recognize and respect the Jewish religion and the Jewish historical attachment to Palestine,” according to the transcript.
Asked about Israel as a Jewish state, Arafat said that it was up to Israel to define itself, as long as it was democratic and guaranteed the rights of minorities.
Arafat included the reference to democracy and the rights of minorities to appeal to American and EU audiences, but left unspoken the tripping point of refugee return, through which Arafat hopes to establish a Palestinian primacy in Israel. Dore Gold, a Sharon adviser, makes this point in the article.
However, who is Henry Siegman, the “American Jewish activist”?
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