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British policy in the Middle East

The Faculty of Law and Public Administration (FLPA) in cooperation with the Institute of Law (IOL) hosted on Monday, 16 March 2009, Mr. Jon Wilks, the British Government Official Spokesperson in Arabic and Middle East Representative, to discuss British policy in the Middle East, the policy of the new US President Barack Obama in the region, and the latest developments in regards to the formation of the new Israeli government and the possibilities of forming a new Palestinian government.
Mr. Wilks discussed the participation of the United Kingdom in the Sharm Al-Shaikh (Egypt) Conference for Gaza Reconstruction, which he considered a very clear message to Israel for finding a solution for the Arab Israeli Conflict, focusing on the importance of presenting a credible plan for finding a comprehensive solution and not procedures that may take years.
He affirmed that Britain has given more than 50 million pounds as assistance to the Palestinian people in Gaza.  He pointed out to the role of Egypt in encouraging the Palestinian dialogue and Turkey's role in the Middle East especially when it comes to pushing and activating the negotiations between Syria and Israel.
A discussion took place between Mr. Wilks and the students and faculty of FLPA on the Balfour Declaration and Britain's historical responsibility for granting the Jews a historical homeland in Palestine, and on Britain's policy in the region and to what extent it can be considered balanced especially after its recent position on the war in Gaza.
The discussion also revolved on Britain's position towards Israel's policy in East Jerusalem, especially when it comes to the Judaization of the city, the British foreign policy especially when it comes to Iran, Iraq and Afghanistan, and Turkey's role in the region and Britain's position towards the growth of this role.
The Legal Encounters Programme is organised in partnership with the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung.