EDINBURGH City Council will fly the Palestinian flag from its city chambers in an act of solidarity with the people of Gaza.
Despite being branded “close to racist” by critics, the council joins Fife, Glasgow and West Dunbartonshire in the controversial move.
The decision has been welcomed by supporters who describe it as a “strong gesture” of support for the troubled region.
But critics hit out at the decision, saying it paid “little attention to reality”.
Edinburgh Council announced today that it would fly the Palestinian flag for one day from its city chambers marking the council’s “solidarity with the innocent citizens of Gaza”.
The council will also send a supportive letter to the President of Palestine, and a letter to the Israeli Consulate in London “condemning in the strongest possible terms, the killing of hundreds of innocent civilian men, women and children.”
Chas Booth, Green councillor for Leith Ward, who tabled the motion to Edinburgh Council, said: “I am delighted that the council has agreed to fly the Palestinian flag.
“It is clearly a gesture, but is it a strong gesture of solidarity with the people suffering from the violence in Gaza.
“I am delighted that the council has agreed to support a proposal put forward by the Green party. There was cross-party support with every party apart from the Conservative party supporting the motion.
“It is certainly good news,” he added.
The decision was also welcomed by Albie O’Neill, member of the Scottish Palestine Solidarity campaign.
She said: “We welcome the decision. It is a very positive step from Edinburgh Council in line with the city’s long tradition of supporting people throughout the world.
“Aid relief is very important but only a political solution can lead to the establishment of a Palestinian state.”
Scottish Conservative Group leader, Cameron Rose, said he was “appalled” by the decision.
He said: “ I am appalled, appalled. I spoke in the debate, the decision is a cause celebre of the far left and it pays little attention to reality.
“We tried to focus the debate on the relief of suffering of people in a range of conflict hotspots. The administration and its supporters have been very selective which reveals a bias.
“The decision is revealed as a veneer of passion whereas really it is a hard nosed political move, which is manifested in ways that come close to racism.”
Edinburgh Council confirmed it will fly the Palestinian flag for one day, but said it had not yet chosen the date.
Edinburgh Council leader, Cllr Andrew Burns, added: “I, like many others, have been deeply appalled and distressed to witness the recent loss of innocent life in Gaza and I am pleased that council supported the