Italian MPs to vote on recognition of Palestine
A group of lawmakers in Italy has presented a motion to support Palestine as an independent state ahead of a vote in the Italian parliament, Press TV reports.
The non-binding resolution which will be discussed on Thursday was put forward by parliamentarians from the Left Ecology Freedom (Sel) and the Socialist Party.
The Democratic Party (PD) of Prime Minister Matteo Renzi is said to be ready to support the resolution, making it likely to be approved.
Italian lawmakers say the move would break the political deadlock in the region and encourage peace negotiations between the Israelis and the Palestinians.
“It’s critical to seize this moments so that the whole international community demands Israel finally sit at the negotiating table,” Erasmo Plazzotto, a member of Left Ecology and Freedom Party, said.
The Italian lawmaker further expressed hope that a large majority of legislators would vote in favor of the motion.
The last round of talks between Palestinians and the Israeli regime reached a stalemate in April, when Tel Aviv refused to free the last group of 104 Palestinian prisoners in late March as part of a deal for the resumption of the US-sponsored negotiations.
The move by the Italian parliament over the recognition of Palestine as a state comes months after France’s National Assembly overwhelmingly voted a similar measure.
Over the past months, similar resolutions were approved by a number of European countries.
On November 18, Spanish lawmakers overwhelmingly approved a non-binding resolution on recognizing a Palestinian state. Britain and Ireland also passed similar non-binding motions.
On October 30, Sweden went a step further and officially recognized the state of Palestine, drawing stringent criticism from Israel and the United States.
Earlier on November 29, 2012, the 193-member United Nations General Assembly voted to upgrade Palestine’s status to non-member observer state.
The observer state status grants Palestinians access to UN agencies and the International Criminal Court, where they can file formal complaints against the Israeli regime.
Palestine officially joined the ICC last month after its bid to be recognized as a sovereign state was rejected by the United Nations Security Council. The accession to the court enables Palestinian Authority (PA) to have Israel prosecuted for committing war crimes and crimes against humanity.
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.
Israel, however, has so far refused to do so and is unwilling to discuss the issue of al-Quds.