The PLO on Saturday welcomed Sweden's announcement the previous day that it would recognize a Palestinian state.
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"Swedish recognition of the State of Palestine represents a principled position that reaffirms Sweden's support for Palestinian national rights and a just peace," said Hanan Ashrawi, a member of the PLO executive committee, the Palestine News Network reported.
According to the PLO, 138 countries recognize the State of Palestine, including Brazil, South Africa, Chile, Argentina, India and China, comprising 80% of the world population.
"The Swedish announcement is in fact a sign of a genuine commitment to justice and the requirements for peace, including the two-state solution on the 1967 boundaries," said Ashrawi. "We hope that other countries in Europe will follow Sweden's lead. Those who claim to support the two-state solution must realize that in order to reach it, what's missing is a sovereign Palestinian state."
Ashrawi rejected the idea of conditioning recognition of a Palestinian state on the outcome of negotiations with Israel because it would make the Palestinian right of self-determination an Israeli prerogative.
"This fails to address the very basis of the values upon which the United Nations was founded, including its responsibility to protect and act accordingly," she added.