PARIS - France on Thursday indicated it would support efforts by the Palestinians to secure a diplomatic upgrade at the United Nations in a quest for greater international recognition.
Frustrated that their bid for full UN membership failed in the UN Security Council last year amid US opposition, the Palestinians have launched a watered-down bid for recognition as a "non-member state", similar to the Vatican's UN status.
This request can be approved by the UN General Assembly, where Washington has no veto, and seems certain to pass.
Without specifically saying which way France would vote, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius hinted at support.
"I would like to remind you of campaign pledge number 59 of ... President Francois Hollande, which said that there would be an international recognition of a Palestinian state," Fabius told members of the French Senate. A French government source said the comment was intended to indicate that France was leaning towards voting for the Palestinian request.