Britain's top diplomat says Britain could recognize a Palestinian state

Rayak (Lebanon) – Britain's top diplomat said Thursday that his country could officially recognize a Palestinian state next. Ceasefire in Gaza Without waiting for the outcome of what could be years-long talks between Israel and the Palestinians about a two-state solution.

Foreign Secretary David Cameron speaks to The Associated Press during a visit Thursday to Lebanon aimed at quelling the crisis Regional tensionsHe said that recognition cannot take place as long as Hamas is in Gaza, but it can take place while Israeli negotiations with Palestinian leaders continue.

Cameron, the former British Prime Minister, said that the United Kingdom's recognition of an independent state of Palestine, including at the United Nations, “cannot come at the beginning of the process, but it must not be the end of the process.” minister.

“This may be something we consider as this process, as this progress towards a solution, becomes more realistic,” Cameron said. “What we have to do is give the Palestinian people a horizon towards a better future, a future of having a state of their own.”

He added that this possibility is “absolutely vital for long-term peace and security in the region.”

Britain, the United States and other Western countries supported the idea of ​​an independent Palestinian state living alongside Israel as a solution to the most difficult conflict in the region, but said that Palestinian independence must come as part of a negotiated settlement. There have been no substantive negotiations since 2009.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin NetanyahuFor his part, he has publicly rejected the creation of an independent Palestinian state after the war, and has even bragged in recent weeks that he was instrumental in preventing the establishment of a Palestinian state.

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A move by some of Israel's key allies to recognize a Palestinian state without Israel's approval could isolate Israel and pressure it to come to the negotiating table.

Cameron said the first step must be a “cessation of fighting” in Gaza, which will eventually turn into a “permanent and sustainable ceasefire.”

He added that for his country to recognize a Palestinian state, the leaders of the armed Hamas movement would have to leave Gaza “because you cannot have a two-state solution with the people responsible for the events of October 7 continuing to control Gaza.” ” Referring to Fatal Hamas attack On Israel, which ignited the war in Gaza.

Hamas has so far taken the position that its leaders will not leave the Strip as part of the ceasefire agreement.

Cameron said that his country is also proposing a plan to calm tensions on the Lebanese-Israeli border, where the Lebanese Hezbollah group and Israeli forces have exchanged fire on an almost daily basis during the past four months, raising fears of a broader war.

He added that the plan will include Britain training Lebanese army forces to carry out more security work in the border area.

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Follow AP's coverage on https://apnews.com/hub/israel-hamas-war

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