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This is a wakeup call to all the 193 Members of the United Nations and the world at large to recognize the State of Palestine alongside the State of Israel. This will give rightful legitimacy to the State of Palestine and its right to self-determination. This has to be because it is the intrinsic right of Palestinian people to be recognized as legitimate State within the negotiation process. Several attempts have been tried to recognize Palestine as a State. Palestine land was occupied by Israel since the Six-Day War of 1967 and prior to that, for eighteen years in 1949, Gaza was controlled by Egypt and West Bank by Jordan. The proposal to include Gaza strip, which is and was controlled by the Hamas faction of the Palestinian National Authority (PNA) and West Bank which was controlled by the Fatah faction of the same Palestinian National Authority and East Jerusalem.
The International recognition of State of Palestine has been the objective of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) since the declaration of independence proclaimed the establishment of the State of Palestine on 15th November, 1988 in Algiers at an extraordinary session of Palestine National Council. The declaration was promptly acknowledged by a range of Countries and by the end of the year the State was recognized by over 80 Countries. The House of Commons unilaterally recognized Israel in 1950 outside any negotiations with the Palestinian people and it is absurd to have the recognition of a sovereign people conditional on negotiations where one State will always have the power over the other. In a strange of twist of turns, the very same House of Commons last week voted by a large margin to recognize Palestine as a State, (247 against 12)- mainly Liberal Democrats.
In February, 1989 at the United Nations Security Council, the Palestine Liberation Organization claimed recognition by 94 States. As a part of an attempt to resolve the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflicts, the Oslo Accords signed between the Israel and the Palestinian Liberation Organization in September 1993 established the Palestinian National Authority as a self-governing interim administration in the Palestinian territories. Israel does not recognize Palestine as a State and maintains de facto military control in the territories even in areas under the government of the Palestinian National Authority.
As at 27th September, 2013, 134 of the 193 Member States of the United Nations, which constitutes 69.4%, have recognized the State of Palestine. Many of the Countries that do not recognize the State of Palestine nevertheless recognize the Palestine Liberation Organization as the “representative of the Palestinian people”. On 29th November, 2012 the United Nations General Assembly passed a motion changing Palestinian’s “entity” status to “Non-Member Observer State” by a vote of 138 to 9 with 41 abstentions. Israel and a number of Countries do not recognize Palestine; taking the position that establishment of this State can only be determined through direct negotiations between Israel and Palestinian National Authority.
The main issues currently obstructing an agreement are: borders, security, water rights, status of Jerusalem and freedom of access to religious sites, ongoing Israel settlement expansion and legalities concerning Palestinian refugees including the rights of return. A successful two State solutions needs two States to be in mutual existence. This will provide a message that there are people in the world that care about them and violence is not the way to find a lasting peace. For many Palestinians, the utter despair of their situations has forced the arms of men of violence like Hamas as a way to fight against oppressions. Statehood cannot be conditional; it must not be part of the peace process. Palestine has acquired the attributes of State; it has functioning institutions worthy of a State as recognized by IMF and the World Bank, and is ready for Statehood.
Some will no doubt argue that immediate recognition of Palestine implies an anti-Israeli position, or support for the Hamas, but this is wrong! The right of a people to choose its own destiny is an irrefutable human right.
The tide is turning in the world has woken up and seen Israeli’s recent atrocities in Gaza has categorically shown the world the horrors that many Palestinians live in and that finding a lasting solution and a non-violent two state solution is an absolute priority. The time to recognize Palestine is now!


About Whispers from the North

Whispers from the North is an online platform that appreciates the ecological, cultural and socio-economic diversities of Northern Kenya. We also acknowledge that the lives of the communities of northern Kenya has been shaped by a number of intrinsic and extrinsic factors which have led to complex challenge that calls for a multifaceted approach.

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