The Slovenian government approves the recognition of a Palestinian State | Israel-Palestine Conflict News

The government’s decision still requires approval from the European Union member country’s parliament, which will vote on the motion on Tuesday.

The Slovenian government approved the decision to recognize an independent Palestinian state, Prime Minister Robert Golob said, following in the footsteps of Spain, Norway and the Republic of Ireland.

“Today the government has decided to recognize Palestine as an independent and sovereign state,” he said at a news conference in Ljubljana on Thursday.

The government’s decision still requires approval from the European Union member country’s parliament, which will vote on the motion on Tuesday.

“The session is scheduled for Tuesday starting at 4:00 p.m. (2:00 p.m. GMT),” Parliament Speaker Urska Klakocar Zupancic said at a press conference in Ljubljana.

Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz said he expected Slovenian lawmakers to reject the motion.

“The Slovenian government’s decision to recommend that the Slovenian parliament recognize a Palestinian state rewards Hamas… I hope that the Slovenian parliament rejects this recommendation,” Katz said in X.

The move is part of a broader effort by some European countries to coordinate pressure on Israel to end the conflict in Gaza.

The Slovenian government raised a Palestinian flag alongside the flags of Slovenia and the European Union in front of its building in the center of Ljubljana (Borut Zvulovic/Reuters)

Golob also called for the immediate cessation of hostilities between Israel and Hamas in Gaza and the release of all hostages.

“This is the message of peace,” he said.

The Slovenian government raised a Palestinian flag alongside the flags of Slovenia and the EU in front of its building in the center of Ljubljana.

On May 28, Spain, Ireland and Norway officially recognized a Palestinian state, prompting an angry reaction from Israel.

Of the 27 members of the European Union, Sweden, Cyprus, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Poland, Slovakia, Romania and Bulgaria have already recognized a Palestinian state. Malta has said it could follow soon.

Britain and Australia have said they are also considering recognition, but France has said now is not the time.

Germany joined Israel’s staunchest ally, the United States, in rejecting a unilateral approach, insisting that a two-state solution can only be achieved through dialogue.

Denmark’s parliament on Tuesday rejected a bill to recognize a Palestinian state.

Spanish Foreign Minister José Manuel Albares, Norwegian Foreign Minister Espen Barth Eide and Irish Foreign Minister Micheal Martin hold a press conference in Brussels, Belgium, on May 27, 2024.REUTERS/Johanna Geron
Spanish Foreign Minister José Manuel Albares (centre), Norwegian Foreign Minister Espen Barth Eide (right) and Irish Foreign Minister Micheal Martin hold a press conference in Brussels, Belgium (File: Johanna Geron/Reuters)

Norway, which chairs the international group of donors to the Palestinians, had until recently followed the US position, but has lost confidence that this strategy will work.

Israel launched a war against Gaza after Hamas, which rules the territory, led an attack on southern Israel on October 7, killing at least 1,139 people, according to an Al Jazeera tally based on Israeli statistics. Hamas also took about 250 people hostage.

At least 36,224 Palestinians have been killed and 81,777 injured in Israel’s war on Gaza since October 7, according to Gaza health officials.

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