BBC Olympics 2012 Website Omits Jerusalem as the Capital of Israel
Mark Regrev, Advisor of Foreign Press and Public Affairs at the Israeli Prime Minister’s Bureau, called the omission “discrimination” in a letter to Paul Danahar, BBC Middle East Bureau Chief. Prior to Israel’s protest, the BBC website listed Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine and omitted Jerusalem as the capital for Israel. While the photos identifying Iran, Syria and Libya depicted peaceful cultural scenes, the picture for Israel depicted an Israeli soldier confronting a protestor. Following several letters from Mr. Regev, the BBC modified the website to list Jerusalem as the “Seat of government” for Israel and Jerusalem as the “Intended seat of government” for “Palestine.” These changes are still not sufficient.
“Since King David made Jerusalem the capital of Israel, Jerusalem has played a key role in the government, culture, religion, and history of the Jewish nation,” said Mat Staver, Founder and Chairman of Liberty Counsel. “Jerusalem is Israel’s capital city. The BBC should list this fact on its Olympics website, like it has done for every other country. The Olympics should transcend politics,” Staver said.
“We cannot accept those who deny our history, our sovereignty, and our right to determine our own capital,” said Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat in a press release. “Irrespective of the BBC’s political agenda, Jerusalem is, was, and always will be the capital of Israel.”
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