Google uses tagline as 'Palestine'; Israel fumes
Internet search engine Google has taken a small but politically
loaded step by changing the tagline on the homepage of its
Palestinian version from “Palestinian Territories” to “Palestine.”
The move has surprised rival Israel.
Three days after Google changed the tagline “Palestinian
Territories” to “Palestine” across all its products, Israel’s
deputy foreign minister Elkin wrote a letter to the search giant’s CEO
requesting him to reconsider the decision.
By doing this, the search giant is “recognizing the existence of a
Palestinian state,” Elkin wrote in a letter to Google CEO Larry
Page on Monday, reported The Jerusalem Post.
“Such a decision is in my opinion
not only mistaken but could also negatively impinge on the efforts
of my government to bring about direct negotiations between Israel
and the Palestinian Authority,” he wrote.
“Google has brought about so many positive changes in the world by
promoting connections between people and between peoples. This
decision, however, is in contradiction to such aims, and distances
the parties from real dialogue.
“I would be grateful were you to reconsider this decision since it
entrenches the Palestinians in their view that they can further
their political aims through one-sided actions rather than through
negotiating and mutual agreement,” he added.
Google may be hindering diplomatic peace efforts in the Middle
East, Israel’s deputy foreign minister said in a letter addressed
to the search giant’s CEO on Monday.
On Friday, Google changed the term “Palestinian Territories” to
“Palestine” across all its products.
The change was introduced at the beginning of May.
“We’re changing the name ‘Palestinian Territories’ to ‘Palestine’
across our products. We consult a number of sources and
authorities when naming countries,” Google spokesman Nathan Tyler
said in a statement to the BBC on Monday.
“In this case, we are following the lead of the U.N., Icann [the
Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers], ISO
[International Organization for Standardization] and other
international organizations,” Tyler added.