Sweden to Be Fourth EU Member to Recognize State of Palestine

New York- The Center-left Swedish government said on Friday that it will recognize the State of Palestine to become the fourth European Union country to have done so after Poland, Hungary and Slovakia. The Swedish Prime Minister, Stefan Lofven, announced earlier Friday his government’s intention to recognize the State of Palestine and pointed out that that the two-state solution is the only way to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.“The conflict between Israel and Palestine can only be solved with a two-state solution,” he was quoted by BBC as saying during his inaugural address in parliament. “A two-state solution requires mutual recognition and a will to peaceful co-existence. Sweden will therefore recognize the state of Palestine,” he added.On November 29, 2012, the United Nation General voted overwhelmingly to accord the State of Palestine non-member observer state at the United Nations. 138 countries voted in favor, 9 countries voted against (Canada, Czech Republic, Israel, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Panama, Palau, United States)and 41 countries abstained.Although most EU members voted in favor of the resolution that upgraded the Palestinian status at the UN, they still did not recognize the Palestinian, as they believe that a Palestinian state can only be established through negotiations with Israel.With this move, Sweden becomes the first major EU member to recognize the State of Palestine while being a member of the EU. Slovakia, Poland and Hungary did so before joining the EU. read more