SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association)- In an announcement likely to anger Israel, French lawmakers have declared their plan to hold a parliamentary vote later this month on a proposal to recognize Palestine as a state.
The non-binding, though highly symbolic, vote is scheduled to be debated at the French National Assembly on November 28 and at the Senate on December 11, over the recognition of Palestine as a state.
A draft of the proposal by the ruling Socialist bloc and Left Front party has urged Paris to “use the recognition of a Palestinian state as an instrument to achieve a definitive solution to the [Israeli-Palestinian] conflict.”
However, even if the non-binding motion is passed, the French government is not required to change its diplomatic stance.
The vote would follow a similar move in Britain where MPs voted with a majority of 274 to 12 in favor of a non-binding motion recognizing Palestine as a state.
This came after Sweden’s decision in late October to recognize Palestine as a sovereign state, which was slammed by both Israel and the United States. Other European countries are also likely to follow suit.
Palestinian officials estimate that 134 countries have now recognized Palestine as a state.
On November 29, 2012, the 193-member United Nations General Assembly voted to upgrade Palestine’s status to non-member observer state.
Palestinians are seeking to create an independent state on the territories of the West Bank, East al-Quds (Jerusalem), and the Gaza Strip and are demanding that Israel withdraw from the occupied Palestinian territories.
Tel Aviv, however, has refused to return to the 1967 borders and is unwilling to discuss the issue of al-Quds.