British Jewish institutions to celebrate 100th anniversary of Balfour Declaration

British Jews are planning to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration which paved the way for the ethnic cleansing of Palestine and the dispossession of its indigenous people.

According to the Jewish Chronicle, a series of events to celebrate the Balfour Declaration are planned for November 3 and 4.

The Declaration was a letter by the British Foreign Secretary in 1917 to a Zionist leader in Britain promising the Jews a homeland in Palestine. Britain was the colonial power in Palestine at the time, and the promise led to the mass emigration of European Jews into Palestine and the eventual theft of the Palestinian homeland.

A special prayer to mark the centenary of the Balfour Declaration has been written by Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis. It will be recited in Orthodox synagogues across the country on November 4 as part of the celebrations.

Chief Rabbi Mirvis said: “One hundred years ago, a chain of political events was set in motion which would change the Jewish world forever.

“Those events were so remarkable, and at times so unlikely, that one cannot help but see the hand of the Divine in them.

“Our awareness of such a blessing makes a prayer of thanksgiving a most appropriate way to mark this special anniversary.”

Although the main British Jewish institutions seem to be backing the Balfour celebrations, many British Jews who fiercely oppose Israel will be demonstrating their solidarity with Palestinians on the anniversary.

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