Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein is set to visit the British Parliament in London on Wednesday at the invitation of his counterpart, John Bercow, Speaker of the House of Commons.
Edelstein will address a joint session of peers and Members of Parliament in the first-ever official visit by an Israeli Knesset Speaker. He will also meet with Prime Minister David Cameron.
The visit has already raised a ruckus among British opponents to Israel and those in the Palestinian Authority as well, because Edelstein lives in part of an area that British leaders claim is “occupied” by Israel.
Edelstein maintains, “It’s a disputed territory. We didn’t take it from any other country. They claim it’s theirs, we claim it’s ours,” he told media at a briefing in Israel.
He told media he hopes to develop closer bonds between the Israeli and British parliaments.
“Governments come and go but parliaments stay,” he told The Telegraph. “If you’re smart enough to base the relationship bipartisan then it doesn’t matter who is in power.”Hana Levi Julian