Hundreds of Palestinians including politicians and intellectuals have told Tony Blair they do not want him to visit Palestinian areas on his visit to the Middle East this weekend because of his excessive support for Israel.
Mr Blair's difficulties at home, where he was forced to announce yesterday that he would be stepping down as Prime Minister within 12 months, have been compounded by his stance over the crisis in Lebanon this summer. He has found himself isolated in his approach, at home and abroad.
The group declared of Mr Blair in an advertisement in the Palestinian newspaper al-Ayyam: "He is coming here to wash clean his hands, hands that are dripping with Lebanese blood, with Palestinian water. We, the signatories... notables, intellectuals and political declare that Tony Blair is persona non grata."
Mr Blair is believed to be meeting Palestinian officials in Ramallah in the West Bank on Sunday on his visit, during which he is expected to travel to Israel and Lebanon. He has been deeply unpopular in the Arab world since the invasion of Iraq in 2003 and dislike turned to loathing after his refusal, with the US, to call for an immediate ceasefire in the war in Lebanon. …