Lord Mayor encourages Palestinian outreach

THE Lord Mayor of Belfast, Tom Ekin, today met with Diana Buttu, a legal advisor for the Palestinian Authority. The Alliance Councillor described the cross-community perspective of the Alliance Party, and was intrigued to learn about Ms Buttu’s outreach work in Israeli households. She found that there’s little room for Israelis to funnel their opposition to counter-productive policies.

Alliance Councillor Tom Ekin said:

“Frequently the voice of moderation in divided societies is drowned out. Diana Buttu’s views and experiences, including her opposition to violence and her positive efforts to reach out to others, got a receptive hearing.

“I explained the need to develop relations with others, which we knew from first hand experience is difficult but ultimately an essential part of progress.

“I encouraged her to develop a voice of common ground.

“I also said that the rewards may not be immediate, but taking risks for progress were worth it.”

“The security of the Israeli people will ultimately have to be achieved by people and not walls.”

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