UK considers upgrade of Palestinian delegation
The UK is considering upgrading the status of the Palestinian representation office in London in a show of support for Palestinian state building efforts, the Foreign Office said last night.
"We are aware of the moves by other European states to upgrade the Palestinian delegations in their capitals," Foreign Office officials said. "We are also looking into this in accordance with our support for Palestinian state building efforts."
France, Spain, Portugal and Norway have each recently upgraded Palestinian representation in their capitals. The Palestinian representation in London currently has the status of a general delegation. The upgrade would not, however, give the Palestinian representation the full status of an embassy because the UK, in keeping with EU policy, does not recognise Palestinian statehood, officials said.
Israel sharply criticised the planned step, with foreign ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor saying: "Unilateral changes in the status of Palestinian territories or their representation are contrary to existing Israeli-Palestinian agreements."
Hanan Ashrawi, a senior Palestine Liberation Organisation official, said the Palestinian strategy now is "to accumulate recognitions and create a global consensus in real terms on the 1967 borders, meaning (East] Jerusalem is the capital and the occupation must end". The idea is to make the occupation "politically, legally, economically and morally costly," she said.
In recent weeks, Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay and Bolivia have recognised a Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
Search for a job
Search for a car
Search for a house
Weather for Edinburgh
Wednesday 22 May 2013
Temperature: 3 C to 13 C
Wind Speed: 23 mph
Wind direction: West
Temperature: 5 C to 11 C
Wind Speed: 23 mph
Wind direction: North west