No document in Middle Eastern history has had as much influence as the Balfour Declaration on the current plight of the Palestinian people. The Balfour Declaration, a 67-word statement is contained in the short letter by the British Foreign Secretary, Lord Arthur Balfour to Lord Rothschild, a leading English Jew, on November 2, 1917. The declaration “[viewed] with favour” the establishment of a national home for the Jewish people in Palestine, without the consent of the inhabitants of the country who were the majority. In 1917, at the time of the declaration, Palestinians constituted over 90% of the total population. The Balfour Declaration had no legal authority. It was described by the Jurist Henry Cattan as “legally void, morally wicked and politically mischievous”.
Our mission is to seek an official apology from the British government for issuing the infamous Balfour Declaration. We believe that the British government’s recognition of its destructive colonial past is a necessary step towards achieving peace, justice and reconciliation. We know that a majority of the British people supports us in this mission, as they have demonstrated in the last few years.
We believe that the British public should demand, with us, that the British government recognises its brutal colonial practices in Palestine. The British Government should acknowledge its obligation to apologise to the Palestinian people for failing to meet its obligations and to uphold Palestinian rights. Colonial policies and practices of the British Empire brought great suffering, death and destruction to Palestine. It is now time to atone for these sins and make true and comprehensive remedies. Thorough this Balfour Apology Campaign we also seek to inform the British public about the importance of the British government’s recognition of its sins and call on the British people to support us in bringing peace and justice to Palestine, thus bringing an end to a century of suffering.
About the Campaign
Balfour Apology Campaign is a UK based campaign launched by the Palestinian Return Centre (PRC) in 2013 to urge the British government to apologise for the 1917 Balfour Declaration and make amends. In 2013, the focus of the campaign was global; we collected over signatures from different parts of the world. Our limited UK campaign collected thousands of signatures from the public as well as MPs and senior politicians. Now is the time to resume the campaign with vigour. As we approach the centenary of Balfour Declaration in November 2017, we are launching the second phase of the campaign in the UK, with the goal of collecting 100,000 signatures so the UK parliament can convene to discuss the demand for an official apology. We aim to impact all sections of society through working with politicians, MPs, media, NGOs, Charities, students and members of the public to raise the profile of the campaign.