Luxembourg's Foreign Minister Jean Asselborn last week criticized US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's announcement that the US does not see West Bank settlements as illegal, and called upon the European Union to recognize the State of Palestine."Recognizing Palestine as a state would be neither a favor nor a carte blanche but rather a mere recognition of the right of the Palestinian people for its own state," Asselborn told Reuters, adding that such a recognition "would not be meant against Israel." "The recognition of Palestine by the whole EU would be a signal that the Palestinians have a need for a homeland, a state, just like the Israelis," he said to German newspaper Tagesspiegel am Sonntag."Failure to comply with the provisions of international law will result in at least five million additional refugees in the Middle East," saying it "cannot be Israel's interest."Pompeo's last week announcement that reversed a 41-year stand taken since former US president Jimmy Carter said Israeli settlements are "inconsistent with international law," has caused an international backlash, with both the United Nations, the EU and other states and non-state actors condemning the recognition.Head of PLO's Public Diplomacy Dr. Hanan Ashrawi praised Asselborn's call, calling it "a principled and courageous position that reflects Luxembourg's commitment to the Palestinian people's inalienable right to self-determination and freedom as well as its respect for international law.""It also reflects its readiness to confront the implications of the reckless US policies with positive steps that advance the prospects of peace and justice," she added. "We call on all EU members to heed Luxembourg's call."The Palestinian lawmaker also condemned the Dutch House of Representatives' motion calling for non-compliance with the European High Court's ruling requiring the labeling of settlement products."We are dismayed at the motion," Ashrawi said, adding that it is "incompatible with the Netherlands' obligations under international law and EU regulation." She added that the Palestinians "welcome the Dutch Foreign Minister's affirmation of the Netherlands' commitment to comply with the ruling and call on the Dutch government to implement it without delay."The European Parliament adopted a resolution in 2014 supporting Palestinian statehood in Principle. The motion was a compromise reached after lawmakers on the left sought to urge the EU's 28 member states to recognize Palestine unconditionally.Israeli West Bank settlements have been one of the main issues in Israeli-Palestinian negotiations. Former prime minister Ariel Sharon rejected the 2003 Road Map for Peace plan, refusing to stop settlement construction, and moved forth on the unilateral disengagement from the Gaza Strip in 2005.In 2010, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu agreed to a halt in settlement construction during the Mitchell peace talks. In 2011, as Israel resumed settlement construction, the Palestinians refused to continue the negotiations.Since Operation Protective Edge and the collapse of the US-sponsored peace talks in 2014, Israel has pressed on with settlement construction in the West Bank, claimed by the Palestinians as the territory of their future states.In 2017 there were more than 436,000 Israeli settlers in the West Bank, their majority, though, living in the so-called "Seam Zone" along the Green Line.Hanan Ashrawi is the first woman to hold a seat in the PLO Executive Committee, elected both in 2009 and 2018. She is a member of the liberal Third Way party alongside former Palestinian prime minister Salam Fayyad.Reuters contributed to this report.