Thursday

20th Feb 2020

Ramallah: '10 EU states to upgrade Palestinian missions'

  • Despite the ongoing occupation, the Palestinian Authority is encouraging countries to recognise it as an independent state (Photo: Wikipedia)

The Palestinian Authority's chief negotiator, Saeb Erekat, has said that 10 EU member states are ready to upgrade the status of the occupied territories' representative offices in their capitals.

The move would mark a step closer for the representations to enjoying the status of embassies of a sovereign country.

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Mr Erekat made the comments on Sunday (19 December) in an interview with the Jerusalem Post, the conservative Israeli daily.

He did not say which member states.

Should the move take place, it will follow on from a similar upgrade announcement made on Wednesday by Norway, which is not a member of the European Union.

The country is to upgrade the status of the Palestinian mission in Oslo from that of "general delegation" to "diplomatic mission" while the head Palestinian diplomat will enjoy the rank of ambassador, but use the title "head of the Palestinian mission."

 

"Upgrading of the Palestinian representation to Norway is in recognition of the efforts made by the Palestinian Authority," said a spokesman for the Norwegian foreign mission, Bjorn Svenungsen, the AP reports.

"In the last three years, since the donor conference in Paris in 2007, the Palestinian Authority has come a long way in laying the foundation for the establishment of a Palestinian state."

Meanwhile, Ecuador, Paraguay and Peru are expected to recognise the state of Palestine based on its 1967 borders. Similar announcements have come from Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay and last week Bolivia.

In a fresh diplomatic gambit, Ramallah on Friday called on European countries to recognise Palestine as a state.

However, last week, EU foreign ministers agreed that they would recognise such a state only "when appropriate."

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