Australia Follows Global Wave, Considers Palestinian State Recognition

Sat Apr 13 2024
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SYDNEY: A day after Ireland, Spain, and Norway announced their intention to recognize a Palestinian state, Australia also signaled the possibility of a highly conditional recognition.

This potential shift in Australian policy comes after other nations efforts to pursue a two-state solution to resolve the war in Gaza that has so far left 33,686 Palestinians, with a majority being women and children, dead and 76,309 others injured.

Foreign Affairs Minister Penny Wong ignited a heated political debate by raising the prospect of conditional recognition.

She highlighted that such a move could contribute to international efforts aimed at achieving peace through a two-state solution.

Wong specified conditions, including a ceasefire in Gaza, the release of Israeli hostages held by Hamas, and the exclusion of Hamas from any future Palestinian government.

Wong emphasized that a two-state solution is crucial for promoting peace in the region, asserting that recognizing a Palestinian state alongside a secure Israel would help realize Palestinian aspirations and combat extremism.

Australia’s Possible Recognition and Opposition

However, Australia’s conservative opposition criticized Wong’s proposal, accusing her of damaging Australia’s relationship with Israel. Shadow Foreign Affairs Minister Simon Birmingham argued against fast-tracking recognition of Palestinian statehood, advocating for a different approach to the issue.

The debate surrounding the potential recognition of a Palestinian state reflects ongoing efforts by various countries to address the longstanding conflict in the Middle East. While the two-state solution has been central to peace efforts, challenges remain, including determining borders, governance, and the status of Jerusalem. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has strongly opposed the idea of an independent Palestinian state.

Advocates for Palestinian rights, such as Nasser Mashni of the Australia-Palestine Advocacy Network, argue in favor of endorsing the recognition of a Palestinian state, highlighting the importance of self-determination for the Palestinian people.

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