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Spanish parliament recognises Palestinian state

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The Spanish parliament has passed a symbolic motion to urge the government to recognize Palestine as a state, though stating that a peace accord with Israel must precede any Spanish recognition of Palestinian sovereignty over the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

“The parliament urges the government to recognize Palestine as a state,” the text that was adopted was quoted by Reuters late on Tuesday, November 18.

“This recognition should be the consequence of a process negotiated between the parties that guarantees peace and security for both, the respect of the rights of the citizens and regional stability.”

Brought by the opposition Socialists, the motion passed on Tuesday with 319 votes in favor, two opposed and a single abstention.

Echoing similar motions in Britian and Ireland last month, the symbolic motion was watered down after yesterday’s attack on Al-Quds synagogue which left five Israelis dead.

Beatriz Rodríguez-Salmones of the People’s party, which holds an absolute majority in the lower house, told the debate her party would not back a unilateral recognition of the Palestinian state “at a time of intense pain for Israel”.

“It is not the right time to seek a unilateral recognition. Peace and a peaceful cohabitation between two states are the objective … The method is a negotiation between the two,” she said.

Calls to recognize Palestine’s statehood have been mounting across Europe especially after Sweden’s move last month to recognize Palestine as an independent state.

Sweden was followed by similar motions from British and Irish lawmakers who voted in favor of the recognition of Palestine as a state.

France is also eyeing its own non-binding resolution this month.

The EU’s new foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, said the bloc’s 28 foreign ministers discussed on Monday how they could start “a positive process with the Israelis and Palestinians to relaunch a peace process”.

Israel occupied the holy city of Al-Quds, the West Bank and Golan Heights in the 1967 war and later annexed them in a move not recognized by the international community or UN resolutions.

Since then, Israel has adopted a series of oppressive measures to force the Palestinians out of Al-Quds, including systematic demolition of their homes and building settlements.

There are more than 164 Jewish settlements in the West Bank, eating up more than 40 percent of the occupied West Bank.

The international community considers all settlements on the occupied land illegal. ONISLAM

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