14th June 2024
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Spain, Ireland & Norway to recognise Palestinian state on 28 May

Spain, Ireland and Norway announced on Wednesday that they would recognise a Palestinian state on 28 May, saying that they hoped other Western countries would follow suit, prompting Israel to recall its ambassadors.

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez said the move was aimed at accelerating efforts to secure a ceasefire in Israel’s war with Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

‘We hope that our recognition and our reasons contribute to other western countries to follow this path because the more we are, the more strength we will have to impose a ceasefire, to achieve the release of the hostages held by Hamas, to relaunch the political process that can lead to a peace agreement,’ he said in a speech to the Spanish Congress.

Meanwhile, Irish Prime Minister Simon Harris said on Wednesday his country had coordinated with Spain and Norway, ‘a historic and important day for … Palestine’.

Several other European countries have in the past weeks indicated that they plan to recognise a Palestinian state, arguing a two-state solution is essential for lasting peace in the region.

Spain and its allies have spent months lobbying European nations, including France, Portugal, Belgium and Slovenia, to garner support for the recognition of a Palestinian state.

Hamas launched an attack on Israel on 7 October which resulted in the deaths of more than 1,170 people, mostly civilians, according to reports based on Israeli official figures.

The militants also took 252 hostages, 124 of whom are still held captive in Gaza, including 37 the Israeli military says are dead.

Israel’s retaliatory offensive has killed at least 35,647 people in Gaza, mostly women and children, according to the Hamas-run territory’s health ministry.

 

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