UK’s Labour Party pledges to recognise Palestinian state

Britain’s main opposition Labour Party leader Keir Starmer delivers a speech on stage during the launching of Labour Party election manifesto, in Manchester, on June 13, 2024 [Getty]

Britain’s opposition Labour Party, which is far ahead in polls before a July 4 election, pledged on Thursday to recognise a Palestinian state as a contribution to a renewed peace process.

“Palestinian statehood is the inalienable right of the Palestinian people,” said Labour’s election manifesto – the collection of policies it would enact if it forms the next government.

“We are committed to recognising a Palestinian state as a contribution to a renewed peace process which results in a two-state solution with a safe and secure Israel alongside a viable and sovereign Palestinian state.”

The current Conservative-led government has previously said Britain could formally recognise a Palestinian state before the end of a peace process, and that Palestinians in occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip must be given “the political perspective of a credible route to a Palestinian state and a new future”.

In May, Spain, Ireland and Norway officially recognised a Palestinian state, prompting an angry reaction from Israel, which has found itself increasingly isolated after more than seven months of conflict in Gaza. 

Launching Labour’s election manifesto in the northwest England city of Manchester, Labour Party leader Keir Starmer said that if he’s elected on July 4 , he will end the “desperate era of gestures and gimmicks” of the Conservative Party’s turbulent tenure.

Labour government would “stop the chaos, turn the page and start to rebuild our country.”

Next month British voters will elect lawmakers to fill all 650 seats in the House of Commons, and the leader of the party that can command a majority — either alone or in coalition — will become prime minister.

Labour currently has a double-digit lead over Prime Minister Rishi Sunak ’s governing Conservatives in opinion polls.

The Tories have been in power for 14 years under five different prime ministers.

The party jettisoned two prime ministers without an election in quick succession in 2022: first Boris Johnson, felled by scandals , then Liz Truss, who rocked the economy with drastic tax-slashing plans and lasted just seven weeks in office.

Sunak released the Conservative manifesto — the party’s key handbook of promises — on Tuesday, pledging to cut taxes and reduce immigration if the Conservative Party is reelected.

Before the manifesto launch, Labour said the document would be “littered with unfunded commitment after unfunded commitment”.

“Whatever the Tories announce tomorrow, the money is not there,” said Labour’s Jonathan Ashworth.

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