Tuesday, 7 Jul 2020 - 15 of Tammuz, 5780

Luxembourg reportedly pushing for all EU member states to recognize a State of Palestine

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Jean Asselborn, Foreign Minister of Luxembourg: “The recognition of Palestine as a State would neither be a favour, nor a blank check, but a simple recognition of the right of the Palestinian people to their own State. In no way would it be directed against Israel. Indeed, if we want to contribute to solving the conflict between Israel and Palestine, we must never lose sight of Israel’s security conditions, as well as of justice and dignity for the Palestinian people”.

The Foreign Minister of Luxembourg Jean Asselborn is reportedly pushing for all European Union member states to recognize a Palestinian state in response to the recent statement by U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo that the U.S. doesn’t see the Israeli settlements in the West Bank as illegal.

According to a report on Israel’s Channel 13, Asselborn, who is known to be pro-Palestinian, has sent a letter to the new EU foreign affairs chief,  Josep Borrell, and to all other EU Foreign Ministers in which he stresses that the way to save the two-state solution is to create “a more equitable situation” between Israel and the Palestinians.

‘’It is time to start a debate within the European Union on the opportunity of a recognition of the State of Palestine by all its Member States,” he wrote.

He added: “The recognition of Palestine as a State would neither be a favour, nor a blank check, but a simple recognition of the right of the Palestinian people to their own State. In no way would it be directed against Israel. Indeed, if we want to contribute to solving the conflict between Israel and Palestine, we must never lose sight of Israel’s security conditions, as well as of justice and dignity for the Palestinian people”.

So far, only Sweden has decided to unilaterally recognize a Palestinian State.

While the letter was sent ahead of Monday’s meeting of EU Foreign Ministers in Brussels, know as the Foreign Affairs Council-, the topic was not discussed. It will be on the table of the ministers at their next meeting in January.

After Secretary Mike Pompeo declared last month that the current US administration was changing its stance on the legality of Israeli settlements, outgoing EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini issued a statement that reiterated that the EU’s  position “remains unchanged, that all settlement activity is illegal under international law and it erodes the viability of the two-state solution and the prospects for a lasting peace.”

But no joint statement to condemn the U.S. move was issued after Hungary blocked the initiative.

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