‘Failed Moral Test’ – Australian Parliament Blocks Motion to Recognize Palestinian State

The Australian Parliament House in Canberra. (Photo: Andrea Schaffer, via Wikimedia Commons)

Australia’s senators made a fresh effort in the country’s parliament on Tuesday to recognize the Palestinian state but failed as the Labor-led government opposed the motion.

The motion was moved in the Senate by lawmaker Mehreen Faruqi, deputy leader of the Australian Greens party, the Anadolu news agency reported.

It was the second attempt in as many months by Australian lawmakers to follow 145 nations that recognize Palestine as an independent state.

“Today, I moved a simple motion calling for a basic, fundamental act of justice, to recognize Palestine,” Faruqi said on X.  “I’m pleased that my friend Senator Payman had the courage & principle to support the motion and cross the floor. The rest of Labor failed this basic moral test.”

Fatima Payman, a senator from Western Australia, crossed the floor and supported the motion.

‘Difficult Decision’

It is the first time a Labor politician has crossed the floor since 1986, to support any motion, while the party was in power.

According to the party rules, she could face action over the position taken against her party’s decision.

However, Payman stood by her “most difficult” decision and said she was not elected as a “token representative of diversity.”

“I was elected to serve the people of Western Australia and uphold the values instilled in me by my late father. Today I have made a decision that would make him proud and make everyone proud who is on the side of humanity,” she told reporters, following the parliament vote on Palestine.

“We cannot believe in two-state solutions and only recognize one,” Payman added.

‘Shameful Act’

Greens leader Adam Bandt accused the government of a “shameful act” in voting against Palestinian recognition.

“It’s cowardly… (Labor has) failed to do what over 140 other countries around the world have done, and that is recognize Palestine,” he said.

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He also praised Senator Payman for her “bold decision” to support the motion in the parliament.

Last month, the Australian parliament’s House of Representatives also blocked a similar attempt by the Greens to recognize a Palestinian state with five votes in favor and 80 against.

Over 37,000 Killed

Currently on trial before the International Court of Justice for genocide against Palestinians, Israel has been waging a devastating war on Gaza since October 7.

According to Gaza’s Ministry of Health, 37,658 Palestinians have been killed, and 86,237 wounded. Moreover, at least 11,000 people are unaccounted for, presumed dead under the rubble of their homes throughout the Strip.

Palestinian and international organizations say that the majority of those killed and wounded are women and children.

The Israeli war has resulted in an acute famine, mostly in northern Gaza, resulting in the death of many Palestinians, mostly children.

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The Israeli aggression has also resulted in the forceful displacement of nearly two million people from all over the Gaza Strip, with the vast majority of the displaced forced into the densely crowded southern city of Rafah near the border with Egypt – in what has become Palestine’s largest mass exodus since the 1948 Nakba.

Israel says that 1,200 soldiers and civilians were killed during the Al-Aqsa Flood Operation on October 7. Israeli media published reports suggesting that many Israelis were killed on that day by ‘friendly fire’.

(Anadolu, PC)

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