Thailand on Thursday joined a long list of countries that have
recognized a Palestinian state along pre-1967 lines. Palestinian
Authority President Mahmoud Abbas subsequently thanked the east Asian
country as its envoy to the United Nations officially announced the
Bangkok's mission at the UN in New York said in a letter
that it "officially recognized the state of Palestine and has initiated
the process to establish and formalize diplomatic relations" with it at
the earliest opportunity, official PA news agency WAFA reported
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Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki called the recognition "an achievement
for Palestinian diplomacy" and noted it was the first such recognition
of 2012, according to WAFA. He said officials in Ramallah would be in
contact with Thai diplomats to determine the nature of relations between
Over 100 countries thus far have endorsed the Palestinians’ 1988 unilateral declaration of independent statehood.
Jerusalem and Washington have opposed any recognition of a Palestinian
state not based on the outcome of negotiations. The US's major west
European allies echo this position. Iceland is outside the EU.
Palestinians have also tried to advance their statehood bid through the
United Nations. In late September, Palestinian Authority President
Mahmoud Abbas asked the international body to recognize a Palestinian
state in the West Bank and Gaza with east Jerusalem as its capital. Last
October, the UN's educational and cultural body UNESCO became the first
such organization to recognize Palestine as an independent state. The
move drew the ire of the United States
, which cancelled a planned $60
million transfer to the international organization.
Israel opposes the unilateral approach to statehood adopted by the
Palestinians and has argued that statehood should be achieved through a
negotiated peace deal. Reuters contributed to this article.