Sweden to Officially Recognize Palestinian state Thursday
Sweden's center-left government will officially recognize the state of Palestine on Thursday, becoming the first major European country to do so, Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom said.
Prime Minister Stefan Lofven told parliament in his inaugural address in October that his Social Democrat government would deliver on a manifesto promise to recognize a Palestinian state, drawing criticism from the Zionist entity and the United States.
"Today's recognition is a contribution to a better future for a region that has for too long been characterised by frozen negotiations, destruction and frustration," Wallstrom wrote in the daily Dagens Nyheter.
He further added: "Some will state this decision comes too soon. I am afraid, rather, that it is too late."
Wallstrom said Sweden's move aimed at supporting "moderate" Palestinians and making their status more equal with that of "Israel" in the so-called "peace" negotiations, as well as giving hope to young people on both sides.
"EU members confirmed in 2009 their readiness to recognize the state of Palestine when it was appropriate," Wallstrom said.
"We are now ready to take the lead. We hope this can show the way for others."
He added: "Together with other European countries, as well as the United States and other regional and international organizations, the government will now work to support renewed negotiations to reach a final agreement."
Source: News Agencies, Edited by website team