U.K. Labour Party Leader Ed Miliband Backs Palestine Recognition

Miliband was asked by a reporter if Britain would recognize Palestine in the first year or two of his premiership, if Labour wins national elections on May 7.

Britain's opposition Labour Party leader Ed Miliband and Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls.
Britain's opposition Labour Party leader Ed Miliband and Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls arrive at a joint news conference in Edinburgh, Scotland, April 10, 2015 Reuters

REUTERS - The leader of Britain's opposition Labour Party said on Friday he favored recognizing Palestine as a state if such a move would help bring about a broader peace deal in the Middle East.

Ed Miliband was asked by a reporter if Britain would recognize Palestine in the first year or two of his premiership, if Labour wins national elections on May 7.

Miliband said Labour backed a symbolic vote held last year in Britain's parliament in favour of recognizing Palestine.

"What we said at the time of that vote was that it was a vote about the principle of recognition. And clearly a decision about when recognition would take place was dependent on how it would constructively help negotiations."

"I am not going to get into, today, speculation about when that would precisely be. That is a judgement we would have to take at the time," he said.

Ireland, France and Italy have also held parliamentary votes on the status of Palestine in recent months. Sweden has gone further by officially recognising Palestine.