Speaker’s Palestine plans went far beyond his remit

The Times

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Narrated by Jawad Iqbal

Sir Lindsay Hoyle, the Commons Speaker, has made something of a fool of himself and his office. What was he thinking in planning a parliamentary event this week that involved flying the Palestinian flag in honour of a visit by the “Palestine ambassador”? And drawing it to the attention of MPs?

The UK does not recognise the state of Palestine. Furthermore, there is only a Palestinian “mission” in London rather than an embassy, which means there is no diplomat with the status of ambassador, only an envoy. It came as no great surprise when the idea was quickly jettisoned by the Speaker’s office. A hasty explanation was offered that no such meeting was actually scheduled, and any confusion was down to a routine internal planning