Question on recognition of Palestine returns to Chamber of Representatives

PS, Ecolo and Groen will again present a resolution seeking formal recognition of Palestine by Belgium to the committee of the Chamber of Representatives next Wednesday.

The seven federal government parties already agree on a possible recognition "in due course" of the Palestinian state, as stipulated in the coalition agreement, but the coalition's left wing - francophone socialists PS and green parties Ecolo and Groen - insist on accelerating the pace.

When prime minister Alexander De Croo was questioned in the Chamber last Thursday, he reiterated Belgium’s official position, arguing that a two-state solution with recognition is the only solution but that fundamental changes on both the Israeli and the Palestinian side are needed. He also said Belgium was working with others to make progress.

The announcement of the plans to resubmit the resolution follows Thursday's official launch of a European Network of Parliamentarians for Palestine, at the European Parliament. About 160 current and former elected officials from national parliaments and the European Parliament are taking part. They want to improve the coordination of their actions in the face of Europe’s powerlessness and inertia on the issue. 

In late March, Spanish prime minister Pedro Sanchez issued a joint statement with his Irish, Maltese and Slovenian counterparts, saying they were ready to recognise Palestine as it could positively contribute to the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.


Prime minister Alexander De Croo is questioned by MP Khalil Aouasti of PS during last week's plenary session of the Chamber © BELGA PHOTO JASPER JACOBS

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