(MENAFN - The Journal Of Turkish Weekly) Palestinians on Friday welcomed the UN General Assembly’s decision to raise the flag of Palestine at the UN headquarters as an observer state.
The resolution garnered a majority in the 193-member forum with 119 nations voting yes 45 abstaining and eight countries including Israel the U.S. Australia and Canada voting no.
“The Palestinian people are grateful to the countries that have agreed to stand by the side of our right and just cause” Abbas said. “The Palestinian struggle will continue until we raise the Palestinian flag over our eternal capital Jerusalem.”
The symbolic move comes as Palestinians step up efforts for international recognition of their statehood despite fierce opposition from Israel and its allies.
Thursday’s resolution states that flags of UN's non-member observer states shall be raised at the UN headquarters alongside those of the member states. It will go into effect within 20 days.
The state of Palestine and the Vatican are the only non-member observer states at the UN.
In Paris Palestinian Prime Minister Rami al-Hamdallah called the vote “an important step to the recognition of Palestine as a full member state in the United Nations.”
Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad Al-Maliki said the UN General Assembly’s decision was a historical moment for the Palestinian people.
“The countries that voted in favor of Palestine are in line with their principles and send messages of hope to our people” he said. “These countries stress their support to the two-state solution while Israel and its allies work to undermine it.”
The state of Palestine has been recognized by 136 nations.