Ireland, Norway and Spain recognise Palestine as independent state

Ireland, Norway and Spain recognise Palestine as independent state

Norway, Ireland and Spain said Wednesday they are recognizing a Palestinian state in a historic move that drew jubilation from the Palestinians and condemnation from Israel, which immediately recalled its ambassadors to those countries.

The official recognition by the three European nations of an independent Palestinian state will take effect on May 28, Norwegian foreign minister Espen Eide told a news conference today.

For his part, Norway’s prime minister Jonas Store said that a two-state solution would be in Israel’s best interest, stressing that “there cannot be peace in the Middle East if there is no recognition.”

“In the midst of a war, with tens of thousands killed and injured [in Gaza], we must keep alive the only alternative that offers a political solution for Israelis and Palestinians alike. Two states, living side by side, in peace and security,” Store said.

“This could ultimately make it possible to resume the process towards achieving a two-state solution and give it renewed momentum,” he added.

Shortly after Norway’s announcement, Ireland’s prime minister Simon Harris said his country would also recognize a Palestinian state.

“Today, Ireland, Norway, and Spain are announcing that we recognize the State of Palestine,” Harris told a news conference. “Each of us will now undertake whatever national steps are necessary to give effect to that decision.”

“I am confident that further countries will join us in taking this important step in the coming weeks,” he added.

Spain’s prime minister Pedro Sanchez also said that the country’s council of ministers would recognise an independent Palestinian state on May 28.

Addressing the Spanish parliament, Sanchez accused his Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu of putting the two-state solution in “danger” with his policy of “pain and destruction” in Gaza.

Following the announcement by these European nations, the Hamas Movement has welcomed the move and described it as an “important step on the path to supporting the Palestinian people’s right to their land and their independent state with Jerusalem as its capital.”

“We call on other countries of the world to recognize our legitimate national rights, support our people’s struggle for liberation and independence, and end the Zionist occupation of our land,” Hamas said in a statement on Wednesday.


Source: News Agencies