Israeli Arab leaders held a gathering on Tuesday declaring that the creation of a Palestinian Arab state will not provide a solution for their national aspirations, Ha'aretz reported.
A document read out at the end of the conference demanded that Israel grant its Arab citizens cultural, religious and educational autonomy, and that their leaders be given the power to veto government decisions on national issues that affect them.
Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni stated last month that if Israeli Arabs were unhappy living as a minority in a democratic Jewish state, then they could find their national expression through the Palestinian state the Olmert government intends to help create.
In related news, Israeli Arab representatives in the Knesset boycotted a special parliamentary session on Monday commemorating the 1947 United Nations decision to partition the British Mandate into an Arab and a Jewish state. The Arabs claim to firmly support UN Resolution 181, but regularly protest the part of that decision that granted international legitimacy to the establishment of a Jewish state.
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