'Palestinian UN statehood bid popular in Europe'

Avaaz Poll shows that majority in UK, France, Germany support UN move, independent Palestine, 'Guardian' reports.

Aerial view of Paris_311 (photo credit: Thinkstock/Imagebank)
Aerial view of Paris_311
(photo credit: Thinkstock/Imagebank)
The majority of Europeans in the UK, France and Germany believe that their government should vote in favor of recognizing a Palestinian state at the UN later this month, British newspaper the Guardian reported Monday according to an opinion poll.
The poll, conducted by YouGov on behalf of Avaaz, an organization that has been petitioning in support of the Palestinian statehood bid, showed that 59 percent in the UK favored statehood recognition in the UN, while in France and Germany the figures were higher at 69% and 71%, respectively.
EU states divided on Palestinian statehood bid
EU foreign ministers to meet on PA statehood bid
Europeans in the three nations also overwhelmingly support the right of the Palestinians to their own independent state: 71% in the UK, 82% in France and 86% in Germany, the Guardian reported.
Despite widespread support on the European street, none of the three countries have officially announced their intentions for the Palestinian UN bid on September 20, and policy differences with regards to the Palestinian state surfaced among EU nations when a number of European foreign ministers met in Poland earlier this month.
"So far the positions in the EU are very divergent," Austrian Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger said in Poland.
The Palestinian statehood bid has little chance of success because of opposition from the United States which has said it would veto it at the Security Council.
A veto would prevent a vote from being held at the General Assembly but the Palestinians may seek an upgrade of their status instead which would bring the issue up for discussion at the forum.
As well as aggravating tensions in the Middle East, for the EU, a vote at the UN could be deeply embarrassing, if members of the 27-state bloc split into opposing camps, with some backing Palestinian efforts and others opposing them.
According to the Guardian, European foreign ministers will meet Monday in Brussels in order to find common ground on the Palestinian issue.
Reuters contributed to this report.
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