PA welcomes Colombia's recognition of 'Palestine'

PA cabinet praises Colombia after it recognized “Palestine” as a state.

Elad Benari ,

Rami Hamdallah
Rami Hamdallah

The Palestinian Authority (PA) cabinet on Tuesday welcomed the decision of Colombia to recognize “Palestine” as a state.

During its weekly meeting in Ramallah, the cabinet, headed by Rami Hamdallah, affirmed that Colombia, through this step, proves “its keenness to support the Palestinian people and their legitimate rights to self-determination and independence in accordance with the principles of the international law and many other relevant international resolutions.

Reports last week indicated that Colombia had recognized “Palestine” as a sovereign state in the days before new President Ivan Duque took office.

Colombia’s new government later said it would review former President Juan Manuel Santos’ decision.

Israel's foreign ministry said it was "surprised" by the reports and added it would seek an explanation from the new Colombian government.

Several countries around the world have recognized “Palestine” as a state in recent years, though these moves have been mostly symbolic and have little, if any, diplomatic effect.

PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas met EU foreign ministers in Brussels earlier this year and asked them to recognize a Palestinian state on the pre-1967 territories with eastern Jerusalem as its capital.

Hamdallah himself asked Norway in January to recognize Palestine, part of the PA’s efforts to bypass peace talks with Israel.