Mohammad Shtayyeh
Mohammad ShtayyehReuters

Palestinian Authority (PA) cabinet leader Mohammed Shtayyeh on Saturday called on Spain to recognize the “State of Palestine” and to lead a political move in Europe that will bring about support for Palestinian independence and sovereignty and the two-state solution.

In a meeting with Spain's Foreign Minister on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference, Shtayyeh said that the 1991 Madrid Peace Conference is a model that can be used to promote peace in the region.

"We want an international conference similar to the Madrid Peace Conference led by the International Quartet and other countries, based on international law and international legitimacy," said Shtayyeh.

He noted that the international conference should serve as a serious alternative to the US administration’s “unilateral peace plans”, as he described them.

The PA’s official Wafa news agency said that Shtayyeh was discussing with the Spanish Foreign Minister the formulation of an international and European strategy for resolving the conflict and finding a just and comprehensive solution to the Palestinian issue based on international legitimacy.

Palestinian Arab officials have been pressuring countries to officially recognize “Palestine”, in a move meant to bypass direct peace talks with Israel.

While several European countries have recognized “Palestine” in recent years, those moves were symbolic ones that have little, if any, actual diplomatic effect.

Spain was one of those countries, having in 2014 adopting a non-binding motion calling on the government to recognize a Palestinian state in coordination with any similar move by the European Union.