US Slammed for Defying Palestine State

Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat has criticized the US House of Representatives for its opposition to the recognition of an independent Palestinian state.

The House on Wednesday unanimously approved a resolution opposing unilateral declaration of Palestinian state.

"Through the passage of this resolution, the US Congress is contradicting the policy of the American government to create a Palestinian state by hindering the ability of the Palestinians to navigate around the Israeli government’s obstructionist policies," AFP quoted Erekat as saying on Friday.

The House passed the resolution days after a number of Latin American counties recognized the Palestinian state to support the rights of Palestinian people, whose land has been occupied by Israel.

The Latin American states announced that they recognize a free and independent Palestinian state within the 1967 borders.

"Recognizing the State of Palestine on the 1967 borders is a sovereign, unilateral decision of individual states. While the United States can choose to withhold recognition of our state, it cannot obstruct other countries from exercising this sovereign right," Erekat said.

Following the footsteps of over 130 countries, Bolivian President Evo Morales on Friday officially recognized Palestine as a state based on the 1967 borders.

“Bolivia recognizes the Palestinian state along 1967 borders, together with Brazil and Argentina,” the Bolivian Foreign Affairs Ministry quoted Morales as saying.

The Bolivian president spoke with acting Palestinian Authority (PA) Chief Mahmoud Abbas three days prior to the announcement and promised to act accordingly.

Bolivia now joins the list of South American countries that have recognized a fully sovereign Palestinian state on the 1967 borders, the boundaries that existed before Israel captured East al-Quds (Jerusalem), the West Bank, and the Gaza Strip.

In early December, Brazil, Argentina, and Uruguay declared they recognize Palestine as a "free and independent" state based on the 1967 borders.

On Monday, the European Union also said in a statement that it "reiterates its readiness, when appropriate, to recognize a Palestinian state."

The resolution also urged the White House to "deny recognition to any unilaterally declared Palestinian state and veto any resolution by the United Nations Security Council to establish or recognize a Palestinian state outside of an agreement negotiated by the two parties."

According to the resolution, Palestinian leaders should cease all efforts to gain recognition of a Palestinian state from other nations, within the United Nations. It also called upon foreign governments not to extend such recognitions.

Washington, which brought the Palestinian Authority and Israel to the negotiation table once again in September, failed to persuade Tel Aviv to extend its partial settlement slowdown, which expired late September.

The ongoing Israeli settlement projects stalled the US-sponsored direct talks.

(Press TV)

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