The BBC News website’s Middle East page of November 28th featured an article concerning France’s apparent decision to back the Palestinian Authority’s upcoming bid for ‘non-member observer state’ status at the UN General Assembly.
In the side-box of ‘analysis’ the BBC’s Barbara Plett has, perhaps predictably, found a very euphemistic way in which to describe the OIC-led bloc which so often manages to turn UN proceedings into something between a farce and a witch-hunt. [emphasis added]
“The Palestinians are guaranteed to win the vote for an upgrade to the status of non-member state because of strong sympathy from the post-colonial nations which dominate the General Assembly.”
In the rest of the report, besides the rather glaring absence of the word ‘Hamas’ which should surely be of relevance when discussing the bid’s implications and potential results, readers will no doubt notice the erroneous use of the term “1967 borders”.
Nowhere in this article does the BBC make it clear that the so-called “1967 borders” are in fact the 1949 armistice lines and that not only do those lines not represent any kind of territorial frontier but that, at Arab insistence, they were specifically defined as lacking any such status in the 1949 Armistice Agreement.
With a specific view to the implementation of the resolution of the Security Council of 16 November 1948, the following principles and purposes are affirmed:
1. The principle that no military or political advantage should be gained under the truce ordered by the Security Council is recognised;
2. It is also recognised that no provision of this Agreement shall in any way prejudice the rights, claims and positions of either Party hereto in the ultimate peaceful settlement of the Palestine question, the provisions of this Agreement being dictated exclusively by military considerations.
9. The Armistice Demarcation Lines defined in articles V and VI of this Agreement are agreed upon by the Parties without prejudice to future territorial settlements or boundary lines or to claims of either Party relating thereto.”
The BBC’s Steve Herrmann – Editor of the BBC News website – needs to ensure that a correction is made to this article in order for it to meet Editorial Guidelines on accuracy.