Oslo ready to recognize State of Palestine: Norwegian PM Store

AFP , Friday 12 Apr 2024

Norway is ready to recognise a Palestinian state with other countries, its prime minister said on Friday while hosting Spanish counterpart Pedro Sanchez, who is seeking support for the cause.

Norwegian Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Stoere (R) and Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez address a press conference during a bilateral meeting in Oslo in April 12, 2024. AFP


Norwegian Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Store told reporters that such a decision would need to be taken in close coordination with "like-minded countries."

"Norway stands ready to recognise the state of Palestine," Store told a joint press conference with Sanchez.

"We have not set a firm timetable," Store added.

In November, Norway's parliament adopted a government proposal to prepare the country to recognise an independent Palestinian state.

Norway also hosted Israeli-Palestinian peace talks at the beginning of the 1990s, which led to the Oslo Accords.

Sanchez is currently on a tour of Poland, Norway and Ireland this week to drum up support for the recognition of a Palestinian state, according to a Spanish government spokesperson.

Speaking alongside Store, Sanchez said Spain was "committed to recognising Palestine as a state, as soon as possible, when the conditions are appropriate, and in a way that can have the most positive impact on the peace process."

On March 22, Spain issued a statement with Ireland, Malta and Slovenia on the sidelines of an EU leaders summit, saying they were "ready to recognise Palestine" in a move that would happen when "the circumstances are right".

Last week, Sanchez told reporters travelling with him on his Middle East tour that he hoped it would happen by the end of June.

Store on Friday said that he welcomed Sanchez's initiative to consult among countries to "strengthen coordination".

"We will intensify that coordination in the coming weeks," Store said.

The Spanish leader has repeatedly angered Israel with his outspoken criticism of Tel Aviv's war on Gaza.

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