PA to protest delay in Interpol application

PA government will protest against a delay in its application to join Interpol at the body's annual conference next week.

Elad Benari, Canada ,


The Palestinian Authority (PA) government will protest against a delay in its application to join the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol) at the body's annual conference next week, an official told AFP on Friday.

"Palestine applied for membership of Interpol more than a year ago, but the executive committee of Interpol rejected the Palestinian request for a vote and referred it to a committee of experts for examination," foreign ministry official Ammar Hijazi told the news agency.

He added that "executive measures" had prevented the issue being on the agenda for Interpol's next annual meeting, to be held on the Indonesian island of Bali from November 7-10.

Hijazi said Palestinian officials would nevertheless attend the meeting to register their protest.

"There is no plan to vote on the Palestinian request at the next meeting, but the diplomatic battle ahead is to expose what the Executive Committee did to postpone a decision," he told AFP, adding that the PA was seeking to enlist support for its bid.

The PA submitted its request to join the international organization last year, as part of its “diplomatic attack” against Israel, in which it applied to over 15 international agencies, in a unilateral move which torpedoed peace talks with Israel.

Interpol confirmed it had received "several" requests from member countries to discuss the PA’s membership at the annual conference.

"However, under Interpol's rules it is the Executive Committee which sets the agenda," a statement quoted by AFP said.

The committee will meet on Saturday to finalize the agenda, it added.

The Lyon-based Interpol currently has 190 member countries, enabling police across the globe to share information.

The PA’s move to join international organizations began in 2012 when it gained the status of a non-member observer state at the United Nations. Since then it has joined 54 international organizations and agreements, according to Hijazi.

Among them are the International Criminal Court and the United Nations heritage body UNESCO.

The Israeli foreign ministry declined formal comment, but an official confirmed it was opposing the Interpol bid.

"We think this is not the right move," he said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

(Arutz Sheva’s North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)