PLO: historic European recognition of a State of Palestine: the choice of Spain, Ireland and Norway


By John

The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) today defined the recognition of a Palestinian state by Spain, Ireland and Norway as “historic”.

Israel's war in Gaza, ongoing for more than seven months since the Hamas attack on Israel on October 7, has revived the global push for recognition of a Palestinian state. Norway, Spain and Ireland today announced their intention to recognize a state of Palestine, breaking with the position long held by Western powers that a Palestinian state can only come into being as part of a negotiated peace with Israel. According to thePalestinian Authoritywhich has limited powers in parts of the occupied West Bank, 142 of the 193 UN member countries already recognize a state of Palestine.

Countries that recognize the Palestinian state

These include many Middle Eastern, African and Asian countries, but not the United StatesThe Canadamost of theWestern EuropeL'AustraliaThe Japan and the South Korea. In April, the United States used its veto at the UN Security Council to block the Palestinian bid to become a full member state of the United Nations.

The dream of a State of Palestine

1988: Arafat proclaimed the state

On November 15, 1988, during the premiere Palestinian intifadathe Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat unilaterally proclaimed an independent Palestinian state with Jerusalem as capital. He made the announcement in Algiers, during a meeting of the Palestinian National Council in exile, which adopted a two-state solution as its goal, with independent Israeli and Palestinian states side by side. L'Algeria became the first country to officially recognize an independent Palestinian state.

Within a few weeks, dozens of other countries, including much of the Arab world, theIndiathe Türkiyemuch of theAfrica and several Central and Eastern European countries followed suit. The next wave of recognition occurred in late 2010 and early 2011, at a time of crisis in the Middle East peace process. A number of South American countries, including Argentina, Brazil And Chile, responded to the Palestinians' call to support their state claims. This came in response to Israel's decision to end the temporary construction ban Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank. (AGI)

2011-2012: recognition by the United Nations

In 2011, with peace talks at a standstill, the Palestinians decided to campaign for full UN membership of the State of Palestine. The campaign failed, but on October 31 of the same year, in an innovative move, theUNESCO voted to accept the Palestinians as full members. The decision sparked a furious reaction from Israel and the United States, which suspended their funding to the Paris-based body. In 2018 they left UNESCO altogether, although the United States rejoined last year.

In November 2012, the Palestinian flag was raised for the first time at the United Nations in New York, after theGeneral assembly voted by a large majority to upgrade the status of the Palestinians to «Non-member observer state». Three years later, even the International Criminal Court accepted Palestine as a member state.

2014: Sweden first in Western Europe

In 2014, the Swedenwhich has a large Palestinian community, became the first member ofEU in Western Europe to recognize a Palestinian state. The move followed months of almost daily clashes in East Jerusalem, surrounded by Israel. A Palestinian state had previously been recognized by six other European countries: Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland And Romania.

Israel reacted angrily to Stockholm's move, with the then Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman who told the Swedes that “relations in the Middle East are much more complex than IKEA self-assembling furniture.”

2024: New push in Europe

The relentless offensive of Israel in Gazawhich caused at least 35,647 deaths, according to the territory's health ministry, in retaliation for the killing of more than 1,170 people in Israel by Hamas, revived support in Europe for the creation of a Palestinian state. Norway, Spain and Ireland have said they will recognize a Palestinian state by May 28, defying threats from Israel, which has recalled its envoys from Ireland and Norway to discuss the move.

Also Malta and the Slovenia, in March, said they were “ready to recognize Palestine” when “the circumstances are right”. Me too'Australia has recently raised the possibility of unilaterally supporting Palestinian statehood. Even the President Emmanuel Macron he declared that the question of recognizing a Palestinian state without a negotiated peace is no longer “a taboo for France”.